By Felix N. Codilla
ORMOC CITY, Aug 23 (PNA) — At least 63 residents of Tongonan and its nearby villages in this city have availed of the mobile civil registration project (MCRP) undertaken by the Initiative and Dialogue for Development and Empowerment through Alternative Legal Services, Inc. (Ideals) this week.
As part of its Access to Benefits and Claims After Disaster Expanded (ABCDE) program, a group of 18 paralegal and lawyers rendered free assistance in securing their document such as late registration of birth, correction of entry in birth and marriage certificates and issuance of certified true copies of documents.
ABCDE aims to make accessible the services offered by Ideals’ Legal Mission Center in 20 target municipalities and cities hard hit by super typhoon Yolanda.
In West Coast Leyte, the target areas are Ormoc City and the towns of Kananga, Isabel, Palompon, Matag-ob and San Isidro.
The activity was timely considering that the Commission on Elections (Comelec) simultaneously held its mobile registration in the same barangay.
Voters with erroneous entries in their Comelec records were able to obtain free affidavits from the MCRP. Some of the beneficiaries also availed of free legal consultation like a schoolteacher who plans on adopting his wife’s child from a previous relationship.
ABCDE began in January with financing from the UN High Commissioner for Refugees until Oxfam Int’l took over funding last June. The program is given another extension with more funding good for six months beginning September 9, this time from United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF).
Barangay Captain Isagani R. Bañez thanked Ideals for bringing its services to his constituents and hopes other non-government organizations (NGO) will follow suit.
Ideals legal consultant Allan Castro, for his part, thanked the barangay captain for welcoming them, saying they were well accommodated and their needs were well attended. (PNA)