The government has so far provided P236 million in aid to victims of Severe Tropical Storm Paeng, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) reported.
House Speaker Martin G. Romualdez meanwhile expressed gratitude to his colleagues in the House of Representatives and the private sector for responding to his call for cash and in-kind donations to assist victims of the storm
DWSD Undersecretary for Special Projects Edu Punay said the agency also has stockpile funds amounting to P1.1 billion, ABS-CBN News reported.
“Based on our latest data, as of 6 a.m., the DSWD already distributed a total of over P236 million in humanitarian assistance to affected communities,” the official, quoted by the report, said.
Punay added that for its cash assistance program, beneficiaries receive between P2,000 to P10,000 depending on their needs.
The House of Representatives has pitched in by packing relief goods and sending the assistance to typhoon victims. The repacking of relief goods is winding down as nearly all donated items were dispatched and delivered to communities requesting aid.
The relief operations, however, will continue and incoming donations will just be moved to a nearby warehouse for safekeeping prior to delivery to affected communities.
Romualdez said the House of Representatives is “honored to be an instrument in helping those in need.” He earlier made an appeal on his Facebook page for aid of whatever kind on behalf of Paeng victims, to which many representatives and donors from the private sector responded with an outpouring of donations.
The relief drive has accumulated a total of over P26 million worth of “in-kind” donations and pledges such as blankets, food items, and toiletries, as well as over P49 million in cash donations and pledges
At the same time, the Speaker also thanked Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) Secretary Erwin Tulfo for helping his colleagues whose constituents were affected by the storm.
To date, there are 67,000 individuals or 16,000 families staying in evacuation centers, he said. Paeng affected over 5 million people or 1.2 million families.
On Sunday, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. said red tape must be reduced in the distribution of relief aid to calamity and disaster victims.
He said he saw several victims holding stubs while queuing for relief goods from the government.
Reports said Paeng dumped torrential rains last week, which triggered floods and landslides across the country. The storm killed at least 156 people and injured 141 others.