1.3 million people left out by flawed Yolanda recovery program-Ibon

Nov. 09, 2014

DAVAO CITY—A year after super typhoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan) pounded Easter Visayas, close to 1.3 million are still living in a sorry state because of a flawed Yolanda recovery program.

Think-tank group IBON claimed that around 250,000 families or 1.3 million individuals are “still living in uncertain or inadequate homes such as in evacuation centers, tent cities, bunkhouses and those who partially rebuilt their homes in the government-declared “no-build” areas.”

IBON’s report confirmed that majority of the affected families in Eastern Visayas are yet to recover from their situation because government’s disaster response has been too slow.

A government report which was released timed for the Supertyphoon Yolanda’s 1st year anniversary Saturday, reported that only 364 houses were built in Tanauan and Tacloban in Leyte.

Another government report cited that only some 215,471 families have been given livelihood support through its short-term ‘Cash for Building Livelihood Assets’.

For IBON, “even if it is assumed that these families were given immediate emergency relief right after Typhoon Yolanda, their needs (and others who may not have been displaced) are vast.”

IBON added that some 780,000 families have either no livelihood support or are relying on scattered efforts of non-government organizations (NGOs) and the private sector.

The number of evacuees has been estimated at 918,621 families while the number of houses destroyed at 1.2 million, says IBON.

In its recent survey, IBON revealed that 8 out of 10 families earn less than Php5,000 on the average every month. “This is an additional blow for hardest-hit Eastern Visayas, which is among the poorest in the country and heavily relies on agriculture,” says IBON.

The IBON survey was conducted in six provinces in Eastern Visayas with 1, 049 respondents.

IBON also estimated that about 5.6 million to 6 million livelihood of workers especially in agriculture, fishing, trade and transport sectors have been affected by typhoon Yolanda.

“Agricultural income in the affected areas has been estimated to have dropped by 50% to 70% after Typhoon Yolanda,” says IBON. (Mart D. Sambalud/davaotoday.com)

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