PGCot presents best practices as Gov. Taliṅo-Mendoza vows commitment to RDRRMC Summit

General Santos City - The Cotabato Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) represented by its Chairperson Cotabato Governor Emmylou “Lala” J. Taliṅo-Mendoza joined the Regional Summit on Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Summit for Local Executives held at Phela Grande Convention Center, General Santos City on September 11-12, 2013.

The meeting whose objective is to gather all PDRRMC’s in Region 12 and report to the summit the latest developments on their disaster risk reduction programs more than half a year after typhoon “Pablo” hit the island of Mindanao also gave opportunity to LCE's to present their best practice in disaster preparedness.

Cotabato 1st District Board Member Noel Baynosa, Jr. presented the best practices of the province’s DRRMC anchored on “Serbisyong Totoo” advocacy of Gov. Taliño-Mendoza which encompasses the revision of North Cotabato’s disaster code and distribution of handbook on disaster risk reduction and management to the barangay level.

BM Baynosa expounded on the organizational structure of Cotabato PDRRMC, its office which is situated in the capitol complex and the equipment and gadgets used in operations.

The provincial government of Cotabato has just already allocated a total of P 16M for purchase of equipment for search and rescue operations which include 6 PVC boats, 1 aluminum rescue 30-seater boat, early warning device system placed in Alamada and Carmen and other gadgets.

This is apart from the capability enhancement trainings given to rescuers in these past few months.

BM Baynosa also emphasized the efforts of the Cotabato provincial government in providing assistance to victims of natural calamity or human-induced disasters. He said that “Serbisyong Totoo” programs like in the form of relief goods distribution and medical services in inevitably present during calamitous situations.

Along with these aids are the various projects implemented by the provincial government which are very useful during calamities such as multi-cabs and covered courts. BM Baynosa attributed all these to the high level of political will of the provincial officials and the good governance they radiate as leaders.

Cot. PDRRMC Head Cynthia Ortega for her part discussed on the level of the Local DRRMC’s plan template or plan based on the two existing republic acts – R.A. 10121 or the Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Act of 2010 and R.A. 9729 or the Climate Change Act of 2009.

The Local DRRMC plan Ortega said is “A document that comprehensively lists and itemizes the preparations of each locality to face calamitous situations such as typhoon “Pablo” in December of 2012 and what is the level of their preparedness in the eventuality like this”.

Also in attendance during the activity are the provincial DRRM’s coming from South Cotabato, Sarangani, General Santos, Davao and North Cotabato.

The holding of the summit is in compliance to the directive of President Benigno S. Aquino to all Local Chief Executives to strengthen their respective DRRMC’s after series of typhoons devastated the country in n the last two to three years.

The event is also an opportunity for LCE’s to share all the steps and measures they have taken to prevent or if not lessen the adverse effects of calamities.

Each LCE or their representative was given 15 minutes and presented their best disaster risk reduction and management best practice.

North Cotabato was one of this year’s nominees for 2013 Gawad KALASAG National Search for Excellence in DRRM and Humanitarian Assistance which attest to the endeavors of the provincial government to execute its plans and programs for disaster preparedness.

An open forum was also conducted after the presentations of the LCE’s or their representatives.

The highlight of the summit is the signing of commitment and support to DRRM by the local chief executives, the representatives from Office of the Civil Defense, Dept. of Science and Technology, PHIVOLCS, Philippine Red Cross and many other organizations.

The signing was witnessed by OCD-12 Officer-in-Charge and RDRRMC-12 Acting Chair Jerome B. Barranco, DILG-12 Regional Director and RDRRMC Vice-Chair Reynaldo M. Bungubung and Representative Pedro B. Acharon, Jr. of the 1st District of South Cotabato. JIMMY STA. CRUZ