By: Gerome Dalipe
THE Iloilo Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) ordered 22,200 pieces of posters meant to educate residents in the province when a natural calamity strikes in 2017.
These posters were supposed to be distributed and posted in various schools, barangays, towns, and public offices and buildings in the fourth quarter of that year.
But only 5,950 pieces, or 26.80 percent, of the 22,200 posters have been distributed, the Commission on Audit (COA) discovered.
What happened to remain 16,250 pieces of posters worth about P305, 500? They are just piling up inside the Provincial Capitol, the state auditors said.
“The delayed distribution of the subject posters diminished the opportunity of a community to survive the associated hazards arising from tropical cyclones, floods, storm surges, and similar calamities,” the auditors said.
The procurement of the posters was part of the information and education campaign of the provincial disaster office in 2017.
The strategy included the production and dissemination of information materials-posters, on tropical cyclone floods, landslides and storm surges.
The program aimed at educating constituents in the province on tropical cyclones, the associated hazards, and what to do to mitigate if not avoid the latter.
The posters were supposed to be distributed and posted in various schools, barangays, municipalities, provincial buildings or offices, civil society organizations, entities, and institutions by the end of 2017.
In their report, the auditors found out that more than half of the campaign posters have not been delivered by 2018.
The poster supplier blamed the delay in finalization of lay-out and delivery of posters as the reason why about 16,250 pieces of posters that cost P305,500 have not been fully delivered.
“Hence, the objective to educate and capacitate all residents of the Province was not achieved,” the auditors said. The auditors said about 14,500 pieces valued at P272,600 are just piled up in the entrance of the Iloilo Capitol.
On the other hand, the 1,750 pieces of posters that cost 32,900 were kept inside the provincial disaster risk reduction and management office.
Replying to the issue, the provincial disaster officer said the delay in the distribution of poster was due to the editing and revision of lay-out that contributed in the late finalization and printing of materials.
The lack of vehicle and personnel who would distribute the posters also added to the delay.
In the report, the auditors pointed out the campaign posters on disaster preparedness improve people’s awareness and capacitate them to handle disaster problems or emergencies.
“Thus, information dissemination should be timely done; otherwise risk and damage from unexpected disaster might not be reduced,” the auditors said.
The auditors asked the governor to direct the provincial disaster risk office to formulate strategies to immediately distribute the remaining posters to the intended recipients.
The disaster risk officer is also urged to ensure that the final layout and specification of the campaign materials are prepared before submitting the purchase request to the bids and awards committee to avoid delay.