Margareta Wahlström
Margareta Wahlström , head of the United Nation Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR). Photo courtesy of

TACLOBAN CITY, Sept. 15 (PNA) – Margareta Wahlström, head of the United Nation Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR) was pleased to see the progress of post-Yolanda reconstruction activities in Leyte province.

Many things have changed since her visit a year ago, the UN official observed, but there’s a lot of things to do in terms of recovery.

“I have seen so much progress and I am so much encouraged by that,” said Wahlström at the conclusion of her day-long visit to the province late Monday afternoon.

“Although two years is a long time in an individual’s life, it’s a short time to recover after that big devastation,” she added.

Although progress can be seen in terms of livelihood, Wahlström said that in some areas, there is a need to hasten work particularly in the construction of housing units.

Wahlström was with Department of Social Welfare and Development Secretary Corazon J. Soliman during the visit to the city where she also met Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez.

Romualdez relayed to the UNISDR chief the water supply problem in relocation sites, which was also echoed by residents in Cali temporary shelter during a brief interaction.

Temporary shelter dwellers informed Wahlström their eagerness to be transferred to their permanent housing units, but they will only do so if housing units have water supply.

After Tacloban, she went to Javier, Leyte where Javier Mayor Leonardo Javier ushered her to relocation sites for more than 400 residents living in coastal communities.

The UN official then went to Tanauan town where she was welcomed by Tanauan Mayor Pelagio Tecson at the Pago relocation site.

In her brief talk with the residents in Pago relocation site, Walhstrom lauded the administration of Tecson for his effort to ensure “that the communities in his town are moving fast” after the disaster.

After Tanauan, Wahlström and Soliman went to Palo town to talk with Palo Mayor Remedios Petilla and asked the current situation on the progress of rehabilitation of the town. (PNA)