LA TRINIDAD, Benguet – The Cordillera Office of the Civil Defense (OCD-CAR) formally turned over to the municipal government the cash award after the municipality was adjudged to have the best disaster risk reduction and management (DRMM) for first to third class municipalities in the Search for Gawad Kalamidad at Sakuna Labanan, Sariling Galing ang Kaligtasan (KALASAG) awardees among various sectors nationwide.
OCD-CAR regional director Albert Mogol formally turned over to Mayor Romeo K. Salda a check amounting to P500,000 representing the municipal government’s cash award after being adjuged as the best DRRM first to third class municipalities for the second year in a row.
Last year, La Trinidad bagged the best DRRM in the first to third class municipalities during the national Search for Gawad KALASAG awardees while the La Trinidad-based Epiphany Learning Center bagged the best DRRM in the private learning institution category wherein Elvernice Salda-Fanged is the school principal of the said institution.
“ We will use the funds for the defined programs, projects and activities allowed under the memorandum of agreement that we signed with the Office of Civil Defense so that we will be able to strengthen our established disaster risk reduction and management interventions for us to sustain zero casualty during natural and man-made calamities,” Mayor Salda stressed.
The local chief executive pointed out that it will now be a challenge for the local government and the municipal disaster risk reduction and management council to continue introducing the required innovations to the town’s existing disaster risk reduction and management programs so that the municipality will be able to maintain the recognition that it was able to garner over the past several years.
According to him, the continued success of the disaster risk reduction and management council and the municipal government in the implementation of preparedness and mitigating, rehabilitation, rescue and relief operations could be attributed to the individual and collective efforts not only of the officials and employees but more importantly the cooperation of the people to the programs and projects that are put in place to ensure the safety of life and limb during emergency situations that may happen in the locality.
Salda urged the residents to always ensure their safety during the wrath of natural and man-made calamities considering that the municipal disaster risk reduction and management office personnel can only do as much to attend to their needs that is why the concerted effort of everyone is required to be able to sustain the zero casualty in the municipality at the height of calamities that could strike anytime.
La Trinidad was badly hit at the height of Typhoons Pepeng and Ondoy in October 2009 where the traffic Little Kibungan landslide transpired that caused the untimely demise of hundreds of residents living in the said geohazard area.
Under the provisions of Republic Act (RA0 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000, local governments are mandated to prepare their respective local disaster risk reduction and management plans which will serve as the basis in the utilization of the 5 percent local disaster risk reduction and management funds that will be annually earmarked for such specific purpose.