Duterte to conduct aerial inspection in typhoon-hit areas
By Azer Parrocha
‘ROLLY’ AFTERMATH. Floodwater due to heavy rains brought by Super Typhoon Rolly (international name Goni) Sunday inundates several villages in Oas, Albay. The Bicol region is among the hardest-hit by this year’s strongest storm. (Photo courtesy of Albay Third District Rep. Fernando Cabredo)
MANILA (Philippines News Agency) – President Rodrigo Duterte will conduct an aerial inspection in areas badly hit by Typhoon Rolly, Malacañang said Monday.
Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque confirmed that President will be conducting an aerial inspection in the regions of Bicol and Region 4-A (Calabarzon) composed of the provinces of Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, and Quezon.
“It’s confirmed that PRRD will be flying from Davao to Manila today. En route to Manila he will be conducting an aerial inspection in Bicolandia and Calabarzon,” he said in a statement.
Senator Christopher “Bong” Go said Duterte will also visit victims of the typhoon when the opportunity arises.
“Ang ating Pangulo ay mismong pupunta mamayang hapon sa mga lugar na tinamaan po ng bagyo (Our President will personally visit areas hit by the typhoon this afternoon),” he said.
“Pupuntahan niya po itong Legazpi. Nais pong makita ni Presidente agad ang extent ng damages ng sinalanta ng bagyo (He will visit Legazpi. He wants to see the extent of damage caused by the typhoon),” he added.
Go said Duterte is also expected to hold a meeting with members of his Cabinet.
Roque also defended anew the absence of Duterte in the NDRRMC press conference, saying he was consistently monitoring the situation from his home in Davao City.
Roque said all concerned agencies are on “red alert” status to maximize their capacity to respond to the people’s needs.
“Maski araw ng linggo, nandito ‘yung mga kalihim para iparating ang kahandaan ng gobyerno sa pagbibigay ng tulong doon sa nasalanta (Even on a Sunday, our secretaries are here to show the readiness of the government in helping those affected by the typhoon),” he said.
NDRRMC executive director Ricardo Jalad emphasized that the country’s system of disaster management operation is in place and LGUs, being the first responders, are well capacitated.
“Functioning naman ang ating local government units (Our local government units are functioning). There’s no collapse of local governments, no missing local chief executives, all accounted sila even bago dumating si (before the arrival of) Super Typhoon Rolly,” he said.
Jalad said Duterte had the luxury of monitoring developments from his home since he was confident that the local and national governments are functioning.
“Dapat hindi mangamba ang ating mga kababayan bakit hindi nila nakikita si Presidente (Our countrymen shouldn’t worry that they can’t see the President) because he has that luxury, the government is functioning from the local government unit up to the national level,” he added.
Meanwhile, Roque said the President would laud the government’s quick response to the typhoon, which has helped save lives.
He said he assumed that the President was satisfied with the response and relief efforts currently being carried out by agencies.
“Tingin ko po ang paningin ng Presidente (I think the President thinks) he would like to commend all local government units, all departments and agencies of government dahil napakita natin na dahil sa ating kahandaan ay nabawasan po natin ang aberya (because we were able to show our preparedness, we minimized casualties),” he said.
Roque assured the public that the government would work twice as hard to minimize the number of casualties.
“We still ask for the continuing cooperation of our people but thank you very much to all the men and women comprising the agencies and instrumentalities of the Philippine government including the local government units and the public in general,” he added.
Duterte is expected to address the public regarding developments on “Rolly” and “Siony” (international name: Atsani) on Monday night. (PNA)