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PIA Press Release

DILG tasked to oversee public safety during disasters

by T. Villavert

Iloilo City (12 September) -- The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is tasked by President Arroyo to oversee the direct participation and performance of the Local Government Units in addressing the needs of the citizenry during calamities.

This was disclosed by outgoing Presidential Adviser for Western Visayas Secretary Rafael L. Coscolluela during a special meeting held recently with the heads of government agency.

Coscolluela, who has been appointed by President Arroyo to head the Sugar Regulatory Administration, said that "President Arroyo has tasked the DILG to lead in the government's efforts to prevent disasters and respond to calamities while head of the National Disaster Coordination Council, Defense Secretary Gilbert Teodoro is focusing on the conflict in Mindanao.

He explained that there was "no transfer of jurisdiction from the Department of National defense to DILG, it is only temporary".

Coscolluela said that when a calamity is declared, the DILG in coordination with the Office of Civil Defense is supposed to immediately check on the activities undertaken by the LGUs, and likewise make sure that they have operationalized their public safety plans.

DILG VI Director Evelyn Trompeta when interviewed by PIA said that Secretary Ronaldo Puno had already discussed the program to all regional directors of the DILG recently, and at her level she will conduct an inventory of all disaster coordinating councils in the region, strengthen it so that should a calamity occur, the LGUs could immediately respond to the needs of the citizenry. (PIA) [top]

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