By Joanne Namnama G. Parrocha
SAN FERNANDO CITY, Sept. 5 (PIA) – The regional summit on disaster response and management became the biggest gathering of cross-sectors involved in disaster action in the Ilocos.
At least 258 participants composed of municipal mayors, disaster management officers and delegates from both government and non-government agencies attended the two-day summit billed Regional Summit on Risk Reduction and Management for Local Chief Executives.
The Office of Civil Defense 1-Regional Risk Reduction and Management Council put together the two-day event last August 29 and 30 in Vigan City in Ilocos Sur.
Melchito Castro, OCD regional director, said the summit was meant to build the capabilities of local chief executives in preparing and managing their towns and cities at all times especially in times of disasters.
The OCD said local officials were made to intensify their roles following the devastation wrought by storm Pablo in 2012.
For her part, Corazon Guray, Department of Interior and Local Government director for Ilocos, said mayors are in the frontlines during disasters pursuant to RA 10121, otherwise known as the disaster risk reduction management act and RA 7160 or the local government code.
“The mandate of LCEs is to carry emergency measures as may be necessary during and in the aftermath of man-made and natural disasters and calamities,” said Guray.
Topics discussed during the event ranged from the state of disaster management in the Philippines and Region 1, disaster response tools namely prevention and mitigation, preparedness, response and rehabilitation and recovery.
Before the event ended, local executives upheld their commitment to work with the national government and other stakeholders in reducing the impact of disasters in their communities and secure the lives of their people. (MCA/JNP-PIA1 La Union)