TACLOBAN CITY – The Regional Development Council (RDC) recently endorsed some P8.40 billion worth of infrastructure projects in Eastern Visayas as part of the post-Yolanda rehabilitation and recovery plan. Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Regional Director Rolando Asis, head of the RDC’s infrastructure committee, said the amount represent the unfunded projects of 15 national government agencies.

The region needs P23.85 billion to rebuild infrastructures damaged during the massive typhoon. About P15.45 billion have been funded so far by the government as of June. “The amount will cover the rebuilding of agricultural and environmental facilities, administrative buildings and public facilities. Reconstruction of public infrastructure is badly needed to fully prop up the local economy,” Asis said. Of the total funding needs, the Department of Education has the highest requirement with P2.29 billion for repair of schools; Department of Transportation and Communication, P1.37 billion for airports and seaports rehabilitation; DPWH, P1.66 billion for national roads and bridges; Department of Agriculture, P1.02 billion for farm-to-market roads and other farm support infrastructures.

Meantime, the Department of Energy needs P864.17 million for full power restoration; Department of Labor and Employment, P503.38 million for repair of offices and livelihood support infrastructure; Commission on Higher Education, P92.78 million for reconstruction of damaged state universities and colleges. Department of Environment and Natural Resources with P86.98 million for repair of nurseries; Department of Science and Technology P74.70 million for repair of weather monitoring facilities; and Technical Education and Skills Development Authority with P60.40 million for rebuilding of vocational schools. Department of Trade and Industry with P35 million for repair of its office; Department of Finance with P22 million for repair of office, and National Telecommunications Commission with P1.77 million for repair of facilities.

“Respective agencies are now waiting for funding to start the project. It will be forwarded by their central office for prioritization in the reconstruction activities. Funds are ready for these projects. We are just waiting for the allotment,” Asis added. By SARWELL Q.MENIANO