News Release

PBBM tasks agencies to study ‘best practices’ from US FEMA; reiterates need for quicker response efforts

President Ferdinand R. Marcos Jr. on Tuesday called on disaster officials to study the United States Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to get its best practices for disaster management.

The President made this suggestion in a meeting in Malacañang, the primary agenda of which is to make the government more responsive to people’s needs in the immediate aftermath of a disaster.

FEMA, an agency under the Department of Homeland Security, primarily coordinates the response to a disaster that has occurred in the US.

The chief executive had earlier broached the placing of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) under the Office of the President for quicker response in times of disaster as this will cut the red tape.

During the meeting, the President made a suggestion for government agencies to study the proposal, as he pushed for the creation of a team that will immediately work every time there is an emergency or a disaster.

The President referred to the delays in government response whenever that are disasters and pointed out the gap in granting authority to government agencies.

“So that kind of authority and you can… basta’t pag disaster, within a day or two, hopefully within a day, pasok na sila and they’ll see what’s going on and then report back to us and start with the assessment,” Marcos said.

“And pagka they assess on the ground, they can already start calling the other agencies…‘Yun lang habol ko eh. ‘Yung mabilis, para mas mabilis,” the chief executive pointed out.

The idea, according to the President, is to avoid the circuitous bureaucratic process and give agencies the authority to respond quickly and facilitate the immediate release of government funds.

Under the proposed setup, a team, composed of different agencies, including the military, will go to the disaster area, make an assessment and come up with a report.

“And then, they will come up with a very – report, sasabihin DSWD ‘we need this’… and then they will have the power… under the OP, will give them the authority,” the President said.

With regard to damaged infrastructure, President Marcos said once the damages are identified, repair and reconstruction must start immediately.

“Nakapunta na ‘yung tao doon, nakita na eh. Nakita na may sira talaga, may damage, kailangan na gawin at ayusin. I’m just trying to parang madaliin kasi ‘pag you are in that condition sa LGU lahat urgent kasi ‘yung tao walang matitirahan, walang makain,” Marcos said.

During the meeting, details of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Fund were presented to the President by the Office of Civil Defense (OCD), the implementing arm of the NDRRMC. PND