Governor Arthur Yap has admitted that not all victims of Typhoon “Odette” will get food aid from the provincial government as he noted that it is not the public’s right to get food assistance from the Capitol amid the post-storm crisis that has left over a hundred people dead and tens of thousands homeless.
According to Yap, it is the local government units’ (LGU) job to provide food assistance to the victims of the typhoon.
He said that the province is only augmenting the supply of food packs from the municipal government.
“Walay hinungdan na mo ingon ang mga taw na wala sila nakuha gikan sa provincial government. That can be a matter of fact but it is not a right, dili katungod, kay ang atong food packs dugang na ayuda og tabang ra ni sa mga LGUs,” Yap said during the Capitol’s weekly press briefing on Friday last week.
Yap added that the provincial government will also not be able to extend assistance for the repair of houses damaged by the typhoon.
He claimed that the national government had told him not to focus resources on the rehabilitation of damaged residential structures as this will be covered by national agencies.
“Actually, we are incapable to give assistance right now sa shelter tungod kay medyo dako-dako ang panginahanglan so ingon sa national government ‘pasagdi ang shelter, sa shelter kami ang bahala—Ang National Housing [Authority] ug ang HUDCC [Housing and Urban Development Coordinating Council]’,” Yap said.
“Mao na atong [budget] gigahin sa para sa pagkaon, tubig ug sa laing panginahanglan,” he added.
Based on data released by the Capitol on Friday last week, the provincial government has distributed 183,284 food packs to all of the province’s 48 towns and Tagbilaran City.
The government also reported that it has received P13.8 million in cash donations from various donors.
Capitol needs more
Earlier, the NHA also turned over to the provincial government P55 million as initial assistance for the repair of damaged houses in the province.
Yap, together with Vice Governor Rene Relampagos, received the ceremonial check from the NHA on December 30, 2021.
However, Relampagos lamented that the amount was not enough to cover repairs of all damaged houses in the province which was initially pegged at 217,890.
“Mura’g malipay ta na na-releasan tag P55 million but mind you, dako pung kaguol atong mabati niini,” said Relampagos.
He said that due to enormity of Bohol’s need for funds, the Sangguniang Panlalawigan passed a resolution asking for financial assistance from the country’s over 60 provinces which were not hit by Typhoon Odette.