Near stampede erupts at Boracay DSWD center; 4 workers fall ill
BORACAY ISLAND, Aklan—Four persons fell ill and a stampede nearly erupted at a government financial assistance center here for workers affected by the six-month closure of Boracay Island.
Members of the Philippine Red Cross-Boracay chapter treated two workers for elevated blood pressure, one for dizziness and another for hyperacidity as workers flocked to the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) action center at the Faith Village resort here.
Workers, who were seeking transportation allowance to go home to their hometowns, waited at the gate of the resort compound as early as 3 a.m., many skipping breakfast just to arrive early.
A stampede nearly occurred when the applicants shove against the gate when it was opened at 6:30 a.m. which prompted the deployment of more policemen to the area to control the crowd.
At least 1,800 applicants were being processed at the center as of noon on Tuesday.
The DSWD had suspended the release of a maximum of P5,000 in transportation allowance for two days after the center ran out of cash and banks were closed during the weekend.
DSWD Western Visayas repeatedly assured the applicants that there were enough funds to cater to those seeking the transportation assistance and that those who would be going home would also be assisted in the DSWD offices in their areas./lb/ac
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