June 11, 2023

Bicol Express News

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Foreign assistance pledge to aid Typhoon Paeng-affected areas

Photo courtesy BARMM

The aftermath of Typhoon Paeng in the Philippines has brought at least more than 100 fatalities and P1.3B damage in agriculture on top of various government infrastructure destroyed in the process. Local relief efforts of both government and private groups and individuals continue to pour in to help affected areas.

With the relief effort steppin up locally, the United States, China, Japan, and Australia over the weekend have announced pledged assistance for the Philippines.

The United States Embassy in the Philippines said it helped the transportation of 10,000 family food packs from the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) to South Cotabato, one of the provinces hard-hit by Typhoon Paeng.

It also sent an additional 25 trucks to deliver emergency food and relief supplies to families affected by the storm.

Asian neighbor China took swift action to donate the first batch of disaster relief materials to Datu Odin Sinsuat, North Maguindanao Province where Paeng recorded many fatalities due to flash floods.

Photo courtesy PCG

The Chinese Embassy said that it delivered thousands of cases of distilled water, instant noodles, water containers, rice, toothbrushes, coffee, isopropyl alcohol, and anti-mosquito to affected areas in Mindanao.

For its part, Hayashi Yoshimasa, Japan’s Foreign Minister expressed his condolences to the families of Typhoon Paeng’s victims and said that his government is ready to provide the maximum possible assistance to the Philippines.

Australian Ambassador to the Philippines HK Yu said that her country offered assistance to the country. “Australia offers its heartfelt thoughts to those in Philippines whose lives have been affected by #PaengPH. We stand with our friends at this difficult time and are ready to provide assistance as required,” she added.

In a twitter message, the embassy of Australia said that it will provide life-saving family kits to the most affected communities in the BARMM. This assistance will ensure that those most severely affected by PaengPH will have fast access to priority needs.

Meanwhile, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and German Ambassador to the Philippines Anke Reiffenstuel tweeted on Sunday about their own governments’ willingness to help Filipinos cope with the ravages of “Paeng”.

In a tweet message, Canadian Prime Minister Trudeau said it was heartbreaking to see images of the Philippines a day after Paeng wrought havoc through most parts of Eastern Visayas, Bicol Region, Bangsamoro Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (BARMM), Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal, Quezon), and Metro Manila. While Reiffenstuel also sent his country’s “thoughts and prayers” to the victims.

Typhoon Paeng left the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on Monday, leaving around 865,000 residents still displaced from their homes.Some of these residents reportedly were taking shelter in more than 2,000 evacuation centers nationwide.

Moreover, Paeng left 5,000 homes and destroyed around a thousand houses. Damage in agriculture was estimated at P1.3 billion, with 53,000 farmers and fisherfolk affected, along with 58,000 hectares of crops hit. The NDRRMC added that damage to infrastructure has reached P760 million.

Due to the intensity of the damage brought by Typhoon Paeng, Pres. Marcos Wednesday, November 2, signed Proclamation 84 declaring a state of calamity in Calbarzon, Bicol, Western Visayas and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM). The basis of the proclamation is that Typhoon Paeng adversely affected 1.4 Million individuals. The duration of the proclamation will be six months.

The declaration allows the affected local government unit to utilize its calamity funds ostensibly for rescue, relief and rehabilitation for the continuation of the provision of basic services. It also stipulated that under the state of calamity, price controls on basic necessities and prime commodities will be put in place to prevent profiteering.