Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson on Friday posed these two critical questions to those wanting to lead at least 110 million Filipinos in 2022.
Lacson also stressed the seriousness of the problems facing the country, with the situation at Taal Volcano adding to the list.
“On the one hand, you have to make sure you are in the conversation and be in a position to win in the first place. But more importantly, you have to get a firm grasp of the problems besetting the country because what if you win, and you’re unprepared to face the problems? These are two equally important questions you have to ask yourself,” Lacson said in an interview on DZRH radio.
We will have to find out how much is readily available in calamity funds of the national government (NDRRMF, or National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund) and the LGUs affected (LDRRMF, or Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund). As per the Philippine Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 or RA 10121, LGUs are mandated to allocate at least 5% of their regular sources of income, including their IRA, for their LDRRMF. If unexpended since there are no calamities, the cumulative LDRRMF are kept in a special fund to be used in situations like the Taal eruption.
The same provision of RA 10121 applies to all the municipalities and barangays affected or not by calamities.
Batangas province in this instant case had allocated P183 million in their 2019 annual budget alone for their PDRRMF although it appears 70% has been allocated for overhead expenses like MOOE, and only P55 million was for calamity. The same is true for the different municipalities and barangays within the province.
There is no saying that I am not supporting the expeditious passage of the budget measure. I’m only saying we have to find out if P30 billion is a bit more or even not sufficient to help the LGUs affected by the Taal Volcano eruption.
Patapos na ang matagal at nakakainip na paghihintay.
Ito ang mga saloobin na baon pauwi ng mga residente ng Batangas na nagtungo sa tanggapan ni Senador Panfilo Lacson sa Senado, tangan-tangan ang mga kopya ng mga dokumento para sa lupaing pag-aari nila na tinamaan ng mga proyekto ng Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
Ang mga residente na pawang mga magsasaka ay kabilang sa tinatayang 140 pamilyang nagmamay-ari ng mga lupain na nahagip ng road right-of-way (RROW) na tangay ng mga proyektong imprastraktura ng naturang ahensiya na magpahanggang ngayon ay naghihintay na mabayaran sa perwisyong inabot alinsunod sa batas.
Bagama’t naging emosyonal ang simula ng meeting ng mga residente at kinatawan ng DPWH, nakahanap sila ng “middle ground,” ayon kay Lacson.
“I advised the Regional Director of the DPWH Region IV-A to simply find a solution instead of arguing and looking for problems. There’s P250 million in ROW appropriations for the Batangas project and there should be no reason to make those poor souls wait,” ani Lacson.
The long wait for compensation may finally be over for landowners affected by right-of-way (ROW) issues involving projects of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
Some of the landowner-claimants from Batangas met with regional representatives of the DPWH on Monday afternoon, in the office of Sen. Panfilo M. Lacson.
While the meeting between the Batangas ROW claimants and the DPWH representatives started on a highly emotional note, the parties eventually found a middle ground, Lacson noted.
“I advised the Regional Director of the DPWH Region IV-A to simply find a solution instead of arguing and looking for problems. There’s P250 million in ROW appropriations for the Batangas project and there should be no reason to make those poor souls wait,” he said.
“I will continue to urge the DPWH leadership to render justice especially to the poor claimants who don’t have the wherewithal to have their claims processed and finalized,” he added.
The killing of priests, prosecutors, and former and incumbent local officials in broad daylight and in full view of the public may be suggestive of the impunity and brazenness of those responsible for such acts.
The Philippine National Police should feel challenged, if not taunted. And they must immediately consider stricter firearms control strategies before similar killings could reach ubiquitous levels.