Senator Richard Gordon
MANILA – With the country taking a battering from different disasters every year, Senator Richard Gordon reiterated the need for the government to preposition disaster response equipment and stockpile strategic supplies to facilitate disaster response.
Gordon, who is also chairman and CEO of the Philippine Red Cross, said having equipment and necessary supplies pre-positioned in strategically located warehouses would ensure immediate delivery of necessary response or aid.
“Madalas tayong sinasalanta ng mga bagyo, lindol, volcanic eruption, etc. at may mga epidemic pa at ngayon may Covid pandemic din. Mas mabilis tayong makakaresponde kapag may mga warehouse tayo sa iba’t ibang rehiyon at naka-preposition na dun ang mga equipment at may stockpile na din ng mga medical supplies at relief goods na kakailanganin. Mahalaga na lagi tayong handa dahil hindi natin laging masasabi kung kelan darating ang unos,” he said.
(We are often hit by typhoon, earthquake, volcanic eruption, etc and epidemic and now the Covid pandemic. We can swiftly respond if we have warehouses in the various regions and pre-positioned equipment and stockpiles like medical supplies and relief goods. It is important that we are always ready because we can’t predict when the next calamity would strike.)
Gordon pointed out that the Red Cross has built warehouses in strategic locations in the country where disaster response vehicles and equipment are prepositioned. Stockpiles of food and non-food relief supplies are also kept in the warehouses.
“Kaya mabilis kaming makapapagpadala ng response kapag may mga disasters dahil naka-preposition na ang mga gamit at mga supplies namin. Halimbawa, kung ang bagyo tatama sa Bicol, sa Cagayan, Leyte, o saan man, nakahanda na ‘yung warehouse doon o ‘yung pinakamalapit na warehouse. Mas mabilis,” he said.
(That’s why we can immediately deliver response if there are disasters because our supplies and equipment are prepositioned. For instance, if the typhoon would hit Bicol, in Cagayan, Leyte or wherever, the warehouse there or the nearest warehouse is ready. It’s faster.)
The senator, who chairs the Committee on Government Corporations and Public Enterprises, filed Senate Bill No. 1347 earlier this year.
The bill seeks to amend the charter of the Philippine International Trading Corporation in order to empower it to handle stockpiling in preparation for disasters or emergencies. (PNA)