Lacson says Mayor Romualdez hijacking, lying on Yolanda rehab efforts

“We keep on hearing [Mayor Alfred Romualdez] tell the media that Tacloban City has not received a single centavo – That’s a lie. We know that Tacloban City has received projects worth P6 billion,” Office of the Presidential Assistant for Rehabilitation and Recovery Secretary Panfilo Lacson.

“I don’t know what is going on the national government side. It’s very difficult to explain to the people what is going on,” Romualdez said last week. “They keep announcing that there’s resources but where are the resources?”

Lacson said that Tacloban City received P6.1 billion in form of projects, programs and activities. While Department of Interior and Local Government allocated P230.4 million for the repairs of Tacloban city hall, public markets and civic centers with 80% of it released in one tranche.

Lacson also noted that Romualdez wanted to realign funds. “That’s one example of hijacking the rehabilitation efforts.” The former senator added that the national government will look into where the said DILG fund went.

Rehabilitation chief Lacson also said Romualdez had a hand in the anti-national government protest in Tacloban during the anniversary of Yolanda incident. “We had been all around the place [during the Yolanda anniversary]. There was no single rally except in Tacloban,” he said.

The former senator said he dealt with Romualdez patiently. “It is only now that we reached our threshold. We’ve been holding on to our punches all this time. Somehow, you will reach your elastic limit.”

Amid the situation, Lacson said national government will continue to work on Tacloban. “We will continue to extend a hand of cooperation to Tacloban. We will not give up on Tacloban. Nobody will be left out in the rehabilitation.”