By Prince Golez
President Rodrigo Duterte on Wednesday issued Executive Order No. (EO) 120 creating the Build Back Better Task Force to ensure full recovery and rehabilitation of typhoon-hit areas.
Under EO 120, the Task Force, which will be co-chaired by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Department of Public Works and Highways, will focus on the post-disaster rehabilitation and recovery phase areas devastated by typhoons, beginning with those hit by typhoons Rolly and Ulysses.
Duterte said the “high-level” and “more permanent” task force will “allow the national government work in a sustained and integrated manner, with a clear unity of command, during a typhoon’s post-disaster recovery and rehabilitation phase.”
The Task Force shall have the following functions:
- serve as the overall and central body to ensure whole-of-government implementation and monitoring of post-disaster recovery and rehabilitation efforts of the national government in typhoon-affected areas, taking into consideration the Rehabilitation and Recovery Planning Guide (RRPG)
- expedite and lead the preparation, implementation and monitoring of a Post-Disaster Rehabilitation and Recovery Program for typhoon-affected areas aligned with the RRPG
- ensure availability and adequacy of key lifelines such as basic needs, medical services, electricity, water, telecommunication and transportation that can be mobilized immediately after the typhoon
- rebuild or repair houses to be more resilient to hazards and build safer sites for housing under the township approach
- restore, strengthen or expand economic activities in typhoon-hit areas i close partnership with the relevant government agency
- ensure disaster and climate change-resilient infrastructure in the areas affected by the typhoon
- create committees of technical working groups based on identified needs and desired outcomes and call on other government agencies, local government units (LGUs) and partner stakeholders to participate
- strengthen the institutional knowledge and expertise of LGUs on disaster recovery and rehabilitation
- formulate protocols, specific timelines, and undertake activities necessary to carry out the objectives of this Order
- perform such other functions as may be directed by the President or the Executive Secretary
The EO also requires the Task Force to submit to the President, through the Executive Secretary, a quarterly report on the implementation of this Order, and publish an annual report on its accomplishments, including projects and programs implemented and budget utilized.
The funding necessary for the implementation of the components of the Post-Disaster Rehabilitation and Recovery Program will be sourced from existing appropriations of the member-agencies of the Task Force, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund, and other funding resources that the Department of Budget and Management may identify.