Sun, Sep 22, 2013 - Page 3 News List

Flood review finalized in three months: president

Staff writer, with CNA

The government will complete a review within three months of what it has achieved in preventing flooding in the past eight years, President Ma Ying-jeou (馬英九) said yesterday.

With a flood prevention budget of NT$80 billion (US$2.7 billion), the government has achieved a certain degree of success in preventing flooding during natural disasters under an eight-year project, but it will invite experts and academics to assess its efforts and issue a report in three months to answer doubts about effectiveness of the efforts, Ma said in a Facebook post.

The president was referring to a government initiative to allocate NT$80 billion over eight years from 2006 to improve drainage facilities in regions prone to flooding.

Ma made the statements after visiting the Central Emergency Operation Center in New Taipei City (新北市) on Friday to be briefed on measures taken by cities and counties around the nation to minimize damage brought by Typhoon Usagi.

Ma had a video conference with nine local government chiefs during the visit, in which officials from Tainan and Chiayi brought up the issue of budgeting for flood prevention.

Questions have been raised about government work in flood prevention, fueled by reports of flooding and mudslides after almost every major typhoon.

Two typhoons caused serious flooding in Keelung in the north and parts of central and southern Taiwan last month.

A recent National Audit Office report found that over half of the nation’s cities and counties had failed to properly improve or maintain their drainage systems with government funding last year.

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