‘Minimize hardship of people,’ Aquino tells execs at NDRRMC briefing
MANILA, Philippines—With the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council urging various government agencies to lessen the effects of Typhoon “Glenda,” President Benigno Aquino III on Tuesday wants one thing clear – the safety of the Filipinos.
“The objective has to be minimized casualties and the hardship of our people,” Aquino said during his briefing with the NDRRMC at its headquarters inside Camp Aguinaldo.
“Glenda” has made landfall in Rapu-Rapu, Albay with maximum sustained winds of 130 kilometers per hour and gusts of 160 kph while moving at a pace of 19kph westward.
Aquino said that information should be readily available for the people in cases of evacuation and once the typhoon strikes.
During the briefing, Secretary Corazon Soliman of the Department of Social Welfare and Development said almost 100,000 families have been evacuated across the Bicol and Eastern Visayas regions.
In Albay alone, where the typhoon first unleased its fury, 65,082 families have we brought to evacuation centers with 31,310 more families evacuated in the other provinces of the region.
Also, 2,705 families were evacuated in Eastern Visayas – 305 of which came from 87 villages and 88 who were living in tents – and brought to the Astrodome in Tacloban.
Soliman added that 6,238 passengers were stranded in the ports in Bicol.
“We are continuing the support for them and we also provided hot meals for them,” Soliman said.
Secretary Rogelio Singson of the Department of Public Works and Highways said Albay’s Maharlika Highway is impassable due to toppled trees.
Despite the situation, Singson said that equipment, like trucks, payloaders, and chainsaws, have been prepositioned.
NDRRMC Chief Undersecretary Alexander Pama said Aquino’s visit to them was a show of concern as the president wants to know on how they would respond to “Glenda.”
“I think it only shows the concern of the president,” said Pama who gave his first briefing to Aquino as NDRRMC chief. “When he asked how we are I told him we’re ready.”
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