PDRRMO chief Jeremias Alili (holding microphone) during the disaster management forum on February 7, 2019, at the VJR Hall, Provincial Capitol. (Photo courtesy of the Palawan Provincial Information Office)

The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (PDRRMO) recently reminded municipal DRRMOs to focus on disaster preparedness to mitigate catastrophe impacts on vulnerable populations and effectively manage their consequences.

A press release from the Provincial Information Office (PIO) said the reminder was made on February 7 by Jeremias Alili, Palawan PDRRMO chief, to around 70 risk reduction line personnel and municipal managers in a disaster management forum sponsored by the province.

“Ang gusto ng ating batas is we have to give more focus on preparednesskasi kapag doon tayo naka-focus it is assumed na later on liliit ‘yong ating response activities dahil lahat ay prepared na. Kokonti na ‘yong ating response activities kasi lahat ay prepared na… educated na ‘yong community o ‘yong buong munisipyo every time na may parating na disaster, malakas man ‘yan ay maliit na lang ‘yong impact,” the statement quoted Alili in saying.

He said municipal DRRMO preparedness means risk reduction managers have already taken measures in advance to formulate their realistic and coordinated planning and response initiatives for their communities.

The PIO release said the forum also discussed “disaster fund utilization” of the PDRMMO with the I-TAX office where 70 percent of the fund is allotted to preparedness and 30 percent to calamity response.

The use of funds was also pointed out to maintain the province’s good marks in the Seal of Good Local Governance Assessment (SGLGA).

“We want to make it clear kung ano ba talaga ‘yong mga pwede, ano ‘yong mga updates at magbibigay tayo ng tips to go beyond doon sa usual na ginagawa natin so that we can do something doon sa ating mga lapses pagdating sa utilization ng ating fund sa pag-implement ng ating mga DRRMO activities sa ating mga munisipyo,” the statement quoted Alili further.

The risk reduction forum was also aimed at educating MDRRMOs on the proper way of declaring their towns under states of calamities in the aftermaths of typhoons when impacts are serious on residents and livelihoods.

The forum was also attended by mayors Noel Beronio of Araceli, Jessie del Prado of Linapacan, Rommel dela Torre of Magsaysay, and Joselito Ayala of Quezon.