Abra lawmaker’s plea to Bongbong Marcos: Help us
MANILA, Philippines — Abra’s lone district Rep. Ching Bernos on Wednesday appealed to President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. for help for her province, which was jolted by a powerful 7.0-magnitude earthquake on Wednesday morning.
“I am standing here as the Representative of the Peoples of Abra, imploring our kaka-ilyan, our President Ferdinand Romualdez Marcos Jr., to extend all available assistance to the Province of Abra to help us rise from the ashes of this devastating disaster,” Bernos said in a privilege speech in the House of Representatives in Quezon City on the second day of the first regular session of the 19th Congress.
Bernos urged Marcos Jr. to mobilize relevant agencies, including the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), the Philippine National Police, and the Departments of Social Welfare and Development, Education, Health, Public Works and Highways, and Transportation, to help the province get back on track.
“This is the strongest earthquake to have impacted our province in recent memory and even the region since the 1990 earthquake in Baguio,” she explained.
Bernos then disclosed the damage caused by the earthquake in Abra, citing the NDRRMC’s report. She also mentioned that school buildings that were supposed to be used in time for the opening of in-person classes in August were also damaged.
She said that health facilities and communication lines were also affected by the earthquake.
“Many people were also stranded along major roads and bridges in the area of responsibility as the earthquake also destroyed the roads and bridges, and made many of them [not] passable,” Bernos said.
“Power was also interrupted, further complicating reporting on the extent of the damages to the province,” she added.
Bernos likewise called on her colleagues at the House of Representatives to pray for the people of Abra.
She nevertheless vowed that “as resilient Abreños have always done since time immemorial. Abra will rise again.”
The NDRRMC earlier classified the magnitude 7.0 quake as a “major earthquake” and warned that aftershocks may occur in the next few days and could even last for months.
The NDRRMC said it so far recorded five people killed while at least a dozen others were hurt in Abra due to the quake.