PRRD tasks Piñol to lead rehab of Jolo fire victims
By Teofilo Garcia, Jr.
ZAMBOANGA CITY (Philippines News Agency) — President Rodrigo Duterte has tasked Secretary Emmanuel Piñol of the Mindanao Development Authority (MinDA) to supervise the rehabilitation of the thousands of families displaced by the recent conflagration in Jolo, Sulu.
Duterte directed Piñol to coordinate with the various national government agencies to deliver much-needed help to victims of the conflagration.
Piñol said he will travel to Jolo, Sulu Friday to assess the primary needs of the thousands of fire victims.
Nine people were injured when a conflagration broke out around 9 a.m. Monday in Sitio Bunkhouse, Barangay Chinese Pier, Jolo.
The conflagration destroyed some 1,500 houses as it rapidly spread to two adjacent barangays of Takut-Takut and Tulay, and was declared fire out around 12:46 p.m. on the same day.
Senior Fire Officer 1 (SFO1) Sedmar Harib, Fire and Arson investigator, said damage to properties is estimated at PHP17 million.
Piñol, who was designated by the President as point-man for the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), said he had seen this early a massive need for lumber to rebuild lost homes.
“I will talk to DENR (Department of Environment and Natural Resources) Secretary Roy Cimatu so that confiscated wood products in the Zamboanga area can immediately be sent to Jolo,” he said.
“We will set up lumber processing facilities there if needed,” he added.
The MinDA chairperson said timely government assistance would not only help the victims but also contribute to the efforts against violence in Sulu.
“Many people in Sulu believed the government does not care for them. Timely efforts would change that,” he said.
The affected families are temporarily sheltered at Hja. Hassiman Elementary School in Barangay Tulay, Plaza Tulay, and Santanina Rasul Complex in Barangay San Raymundo, Jolo. (PNA)