Zambo is committed to disaster risk reduction measures — Celso PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 20 June 2012 14:25

Mayor Celso Lobregat yesterday told the participants of the Regional Tapatan on Disaster Preparedness and Climate Change Adaptation that the city government of Zamboanga is strongly committed to disaster risk reduction work being one of its central priorities.

Saying that calamities are part of reality, Lobregat said Zamboanga City has had its share of natural disasters, having experienced floods, storm surge, landslide, and drought.  “While we may not be able to entirely stop it from happening, we can take measures to reduce its impact on our people and our lives,” he said.

According to him, Zamboanga City has taken the lead in preparing to stem the effects of Climate Change through information and awareness campaigns, citing that on May 27, 2008, a summit on Disaster Preparedness for Global Warming and Food Security, making Zamboanga the first city in Mindanao to do such a forum.

“The summit indicated the city’s long term and unremitting advocacy to save the environment by undertaking measures to mitigate the effects of global warming,” he said, adding that similar activity was also undertaken in the succeeding years.

However, the mayor pointed out that Zamboanga City does not only concentrate on awareness promotion to reduce disaster risks but also focus on long term solutions. “Environment-preservation initiatives also form part of our priority agenda,” which include reforestation, infrastructure development and the creation of special bodies like Task force Agua, Task Force Vecinos and Task Force Contra Avenida.

Initiated by the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), the Regional Tapatan had for its guest of honor Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo with most governors, municipal and city mayors from Zamboanga Peninsula in attendance.

This forum was being conducted in all regions nationwide purposely to assist local government units in formulating and conceptualizing Local Disaster Risk Reduction Action Plans that will be implemented in case a disaster or calamity strikes in the localities. This event also aims to assess the capabilities of LGUs on disaster readiness and response, and on efforts at mitigating the effects of Climate Change on the environment and residents.

During the forum, Lobregat also divulged about financial assistance that the city government had extended to calamity-stricken local government units like Iligan, Cagayan, Jolo, Aurora Province, Marikina City, Dagupan City, Pangasinan, Trece Martires, Cavite, Santiago City, and Calamba Laguna. — Vic Larato