The Department of Budget and Management (DBM) augmented the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (NDRRM) Fund by P10 billion that could now be tapped by national government agencies to replenish their respective Quick Response Funds (QRFs).
QRFs fund regular rehabilitation and recovery programs by national agencies responding to calamities with the President’s approval.
During a situation briefing on Sunday in Pili, Camarines Sur, on the effects of Typhoon Ulysses, Budget Assistant Secretary Kim Robert de Leon told President Rodrigo Roa Duterte that there is enough money for government agencies to respond to recent typhoons that hit the country.
De Leon said the DBM is now assessing the condition in Cagayan Valley region so that it can provide additional local calamity fund in the provinces of Cagayan and Isabela.
National agencies responding to calamities have allowable limits in their NDRRM Funds.
The Department of Agriculture (DA) has P1.5 billion; Department of Health (DOH), P600 million; Department of Education (DepEd), P2.1 billion; Office of Civil Defense (OCD), P250 million; Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), P1 billion; Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), P1.25 billion; and National Electrification Administration (NEA), P100 million.
“So rest assured po that as soon as we receive request from these agencies for replenishment of their QRF, we are quickly acting on it po para mapatuloy ang pagpo-provide ng serbisyo sa ating mga kababayan na naapektuhan nang sunod-sunod na bagyo,” De Leon told the President.
With the DBM’s augmentation, the available NDRRM Fund now amount to P11.774 billion, De Leon said, adding the money is on standby and accessible anytime.
During the situation briefing, President Duterte brushed off accusations that government agencies were slow to respond to the recent calamities.
“Do not believe na walang ginagawa ‘yan. Long before the typhoon came, naka-deploy na ‘yung mga pagkain tapos ‘yung tulong,” he said.
“What is really important is that there is money. Ang ano kasi kung walang pera, mahirap ‘yan. Pero kapag mayroon, I think everybody has the money. It’s just too bad that they could not really catch up with us. Nauna ako. It’s just a matter of coordination,” he added. PND