The Colombian government pledged $170 million to mitigate the effects of the rainy season, the Ministry of Transport announced Tuesday.
The ministry signed an agreement with Colombia Humanitaria, an initiative of President Juan Manuel Santos, to raise flood aid. It will be used to repair and construct transportation infrastructure including roads, embankments, bridges and pontoons.
Colombia’s national and regional governments have been heavily criticized for failing to invest enough money in protecting its citizens and infrastructure from the effects of seasonal rains. Last year’s rainy season caused the worst flooding in 50 years, killing 117 and affecting more than 430 thousand. NGO Refugees International told Colombia Reports Wednesday that while this year’s government efforst were a vast improvement, they still fell far short of what was needed.
The Ministry’s total budget now stands at $234 million, all of which needs to be used between June and December of this year.
According to the Ministry, they have completed about 20% of their projects and another 30% are more than halfway complete. The remaining 50% of projects are more than 30% complete.