Increase budget for MMDA flood control projects – Escudero
MANILA, Philippines – With torrential rains brought by Tropical Storm Egay and Typhoon Falcon once again submerging parts of Metro Manila, a senator said the national government should increase funding for the flood control projects of the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA).
Senator Francis Escudero said the P276 million allocated by the agency for flood control and sewerage management was "clearly not enough" for a metropolis with a size of 63,600 hectares.
"I am of the position that the national government's subsidy to MMDA, insofar as flood control is concerned, should be increased," he said on Thursday, July 9.
He added, "Hindi lang trabaho ng MMDA 'yan, pero ng pambansang pamahalaan din (It's not the job of the MMDA alone, but also of the national government)."
Escudero, who chairs the Senate committee on finance, also said the committee will conduct a mid-year review on the status of government flood control projects in the capital region, where about 4,750 hectares are flood-prone.
The senator is seeking an update from the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), which has a budget of P42.2 billion for flood management projects, most of which will be allocated for Metro Manila.
For its 2015 flood control budget, the DPWH has allocated P1.26 billion for the North Manila Engineering District; P680 million for the Las Pinas-Muntinlupa District Engineering Office; P1.37 billion for the two engineering districts in Quezon City; P460 million for the Malabon-Navotas district office; and P1.6 billion for the National Capital Region First District Office.
"Gusto nating tanungin ang DPWH kung ilang porsyento na ba ng 1,295 projects nationwide para sa taong ito ang nasimulan, natapos na or drawing pa lang," Escudero said.
(We want to find out from the DPWH how many of its 1,295 projects nationwide for this year have been started, completed, or still in the planning stage.)
He added: "The DPWH said in their performance targets for the year that 100% of flood control projects will be completed within contract time. They also promised that all of the flood control structures for repair and rehabilitation will be finished on time."
Escudero said he also wants an update from the MMDA on its promise to reduce the number of flooded areas in Metro Manila by 10% this year.
These "performance guarantees" are attached to the P2.19 billion subsidy the MMDA will receive from the national government, he added. – Rappler.com