The local government of San Jose and the coordinating team based in San Jose of the KALAHI-CIDDS NCDDP headed by Mayor Antonio B. Chavez and Mr. Samuel Torres, respectively conducted the Municipal Consultation last November 17, 2014 at Port Alfred Resort and Hotel in Talisay, Dolo, San Jose, Camarines Sur. It was participated in by a total of 70 delegates coming from both the barangay and municipal local government units. A total of 6 authorized representatives of the invited people’s organizations and/or non-government organizations (POs/NGOs) also participated.
In an exclusive interview with Mr. Torres, he said that the purpose of the municipal consultation is definitely to determine the priority areas among the barangays for project implementation. One of the highlights of the consultation is to present to the Barangay Captains and other stakeholders such as (POs/NGOs) the result of the first cycle Damage Assessment and Needs Analysis (DANA) particularly after the recent visit of Typhoon Glenda. DANA is the basis of government programs basically taken out of the data collected and provided by the barangay officials. But this is not yet the implementation phase of the projects intended for the affected barangays. There will be a series of consultations yet to be conducted in the barangay level through barangay assemblies of the affected areas which would require the presence of at least 75-80 percent of the households. This is so, because it is the barangay folks who will determine at least top 3 or 5 needs in the barangays that requires project intervention, he stressed.
The program of the activity started by an opening prayer rendered by Ms. Myrna C. Pacamarra, LGU Municipal Treasurer followed by the singing of National Anthem led by Ms. Raiza F. Pala, administrative assistant in the office of the Mayor. A welcome/opening remarks given by Mayor Antonio B. Chavez, then Engr. Alma Penola read the previous minutes which was consequently approved by the body without objections, afterwhich the presentation of the agenda and its subsequent approval was done.
Ms. Florence R. Canseco, one of the KALAHI-CIDDS NCDDP Community Empowerment Facilitators presented to the body the objectives and implementation of the DANA Process. She defined DANA as an estimation and description of the nature and extent of damage resulting from a disaster, including secondary threats, critical needs of the affected population, and local response capacity. Hence, the key elements include the planning and preparation, survey and data collection, interpretation and forecasting within the barangay level. It must be noted that a series of DANA validation workshops will also be conducted to determine an accurate gathering of the data needed to justify project intervention.
At this juncture, Mayor Chavez reminded the barangay captains that after the calamity strikes, they should have gone out to conduct surveys, data gathering on affected households and local facilities, determine the overall extent of the damage and immediately report the same to the Office of the Mayor where the reports will be consolidated for submission to the concerned regional and national agencies. In fact, he reprimanded barangay officials who are obviously not reporting accurately. He said that the reports after being submitted to his office is being re-validated to check and countercheck the accuracy. And there are a number of barangay officials who are not submitting an accurate report. So, he calls on these barangay leaders to undertake their mandated tasks, duties and responsibilities for the benefits of their own constituents.
Ms. Canseco continued to explain the criteria for ranking: Population (2010 NSO)-20%; Poverty Incidences-30%, and Damage Affected Households-50%. Consequently, the forum was opened to entertain questions coming from the participants. The Barangay Captain of Calalahan, Roy Fernan C. Credo stood up asking about the percentage assigned for damaged affected households whether it already incorporates damages on agriculture and others. At this point, Arch. Reiner Loria, UAP categorically answered affirmatively. However, further determination shall be based on the criteria as laid down by DANA.
Another question was raised by the Municipal Physician, Dr. Arnel Armea, asking whether electrification cost, when possible, on the totally damaged household can be shouldered by the project. Architect Loria initially answered that projects will be based on the “needs” subject for validation by the Community Infrastructure Officer, but it has to go through the barangay assembly. At this point, the presence of CIO was suggested.
Engr. Eduardo Factor, Community Infrastructure Officer III (CIO-III) of the sub-regional office of KALAHI-CIDDS NCDDP based in Naga City, expressed his opinion that it is not covered. However, he assured everybody that the concerns raised will definitely be reported to the top authorities of KALAHI-CIDDS NCDDP. When interviewed why such categorical criteria is not included, he said that the focus of the project should be taken as a whole for the benefit of the general public concerned, and the categories that were asked is only part of the “indicators” about the intensity or the extent of the damage. Hence, it would be the basis to identify the “needs” where the project intervention is necessary.
The rest of the program includes the presentation of Formula/Criteria for Barangay Ranking by Architect Reiner Loria, UAP; Consolidated DANA data for disaster early recovery and rehabilitation by Engr. Gabriel Obias of the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office (MDRRMO); Formation of Validation Team and Formulation of Barangay Validation Plan for the Barangay Assemblies by Manny A. Clidoro, Municipal Administrator/Municipal Area Coordinator, and the Presentation of Matrix of the National Government Agencies (NGAs) funding/support commitments for each barangay by Engr. Jose Chito Milante, Municipal Planning and Development Officer. A closing remark was given by Hon. Roy Fernan E. Credo, the Vice President of the Liga ng mga Barangay, and the closing prayer by Ms. Michelle Angelica Gorordo, KALAHI-CIDDS NCDDP Community Empowerment Facilitator.