MANILA -- International humanitarian organization Oxfam encourages local government units (LGUs) that are prone to natural disasters to craft disaster-risk response schemes.

"With the political will of its leaders and the active involvement of communities, the good practices should be replicated in other provinces," Snehal Soneji, Oxfam country director, said.

In a poll administered by Pulse Asia last February 24 to March 6, around 56 percent of Filipinos prefer early warning over other assistance such as stockpiling of relief goods and identifying and fixing evacuation centers.

However, the government has yet to ascertain the compliance of LGUs in installing early warning devices.

The good news is, according to Local Government Undersecretary Austere Panadero, some LGUs are now placing high importance on disaster risk reduction than emergency response unlike before.

"Based on LGUs' interest in disaster risk reduction programs, I would expect increased investments in DRR as a whole. The new law on strengthening response to hazards (Republic Act 10121) also specifically allows use of calamity funds for disaster preparedness," he told Sun.Star. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)