Phl to complete temporary shelters for typhoon victims by March
Rosalinda L. Orosa (The Philippine Star) - January 6, 2014 - 8:00pm

MANILA, Philippines  (Xinhua) - The Philippines said today that temporary shelters being built for victims of super Typhoon Haiyan may be completed by March.

The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH), which oversees the construction of temporary shelters, said it needs one or two more months to ensure that the bunkhouses meet international standards.

"We are making adjustments to address issues of ventilation, space and security," Public Works and Highways Secretary Rogelio L. Singson told a press briefing in Malacanang, the presidential palace.

The Philippine government decided to make the adjustments after experts from international agencies said the original design of the DPWH was "too cramped."

"Instead of 24 families per bunkhouse, we are reducing it to 12 (families) so the shelters won't be too packed," said Singson.

He said the construction of new bunkhouses was suspended to retrofit existing temporary shelters. To date, the DPWH has already constructed 126 bunkhouses.

Singson said the government's initial target is to transfer 6, 000 families to temporary shelters by the end of January. But because of the reconfiguration, he said the government would have to reduce the number of families that would be accommodated.

He said the government is spending P14 million ($313,704) for the 222 bunkhouses, including the common toilet and kitchen.

The DPWH vowed to put on hold payments for contractors who will not adhere to its specifications for building the temporary shelters.

Singson made the statement following allegations that some contractors have conspired with local politicians to jack up the price of constructing the bunkhouses.  

Meanwhile, the Philippine government said it is now in the process of identifying areas where permanent shelters could be built. Singson said it would take more than two years to complete a permanent shelter program for typhoon victims.

Typhoon Haiyan, which struck central Philippines on Nov. 8, killed more than 6,100 people and destroyed 550,928 homes.


 

BUNKHOUSES DEPARTMENT OF PUBLIC WORKS AND HIGHWAYS GOVERNMENT MALACANANG PUBLIC WORKS AND HIGHWAYS SECRETARY ROGELIO L SHELTERS SINGSON TEMPORARY TYPHOON HAIYAN XINHUA
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