By joseph rosal - coordinator for community engagement
The Center for Social Concern and Action of the De La Salle University Manila, conducted an orientation on Disaster Risk Reduction Management (DRRM) last 28 March 2011 to the Municipal Council of Lian, Batangas. Discussion focused on Republic Act 10121 or the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Law of 2010. The participants were given a clearer understanding of the newly-approved legal instrument. COSCA also emphasized the urgent need to draft and implement a Municipal Ordinance to allocate a portion of their municipal budget for use in disaster preparedness activities. In principle, the municipal officials have agreed that 5% of the Internal Revenue Allocation be used for disaster management activities such as preparation, emergency response and others. Most of the Sangguniang Bayan members were also made aware of the consequences of disasters and thus stressed the importance of disaster preparedness and management. Add to this is the possible effects of a tidal wave or tsunami hitting the coastal barangays of the said municipality since a study commissioned by the Office of Civil Defense (OCD) in Region IV-A has placed Lian on the list of areas with high risk. The SB members have also discussed and agreed to implement a plan for the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (MDRRMC). Upon approval of the necessary budget, funds will be utilized for Disaster Risk Reduction activities. In the meantime, the SB is set to draft a municipal ordinance providing for funds as prescribed by the national law. Municipal Councilor Exequiel L. Bonuan requested the assistance of Ms. Isabel Lanada, COSCA DRR Project Technical Facilitator in drafting said legal instrument. Ms. Lanada, also stressed that the DRR project in Lian, Batangas is a partnership between DLSU and the local government unit thus, placed importance on resource counterpart of each. The following also actively participated during the session: Carlito C. Caisip, Erwin M. Austria, Mr. Florencio M. Masipag, and Roland H. Magyaya (Municipal Councilors), Jesper B. Austria (Sangguniang Kabataan President), Teodoro D. Palahang (Association of Barangay Captain President), and SB Presiding Officer and Vice Mayor Benito Magbago.
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