1.05.2011

PIA News Service - Thursday, Jan. 6, 2010

Agusan del Sur PDRRMC releases flood update
By: David M. Suyao

Source:
Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Operation Center
As of 5:00 PM, Jan. 5, 2011

Casualties caused by the recent flood province-wide increased from reported five yesterday to nine as reports from the 13 municipalities and the lone city of Bayugan progress.

The other four reported dead are Felicitas Macuno, 65, from Barangay San Salvador, Bertoldo Ploris from La Perian all of Prosperidad town died by drowning. From San Francisco, Amando Batilaran, 70, also died by drowning while Michael John Otero died by electicution.

Yesterday, Manuel Madelo, 28, from Patin-ay, Prosperidad died of electricution, Caesar Aquilam, 51, and Junmark Castro, 21, both from Sibagat, by drowning, and Bryl Jake Mondejar, one year old from San Luis, also died by drowning. Roselyn Poras, 16, from Prosperidad was reported missing yesterday but was confirmed dead later.

Heavily affected floods victims also increased from 31,687 families or 155,475 persons to 32,598 families of 160,439 persons, now from 130 barangays. Added are the eight barangays from San Luis with 439 families or 2,634 persons, and Lapaz, with one barangay heavily affected having 332 families or 1,671 persons. Until reporting time, the municipality of Talacogon has no report yet.

As of 5:00 PM yesterday, most of the evacuees have already returned home from the evacuation centers located in all the municipalities. Almost all barangay roads are now passable so that people can move on with their living.

Sad to say, damages in houses increased tremendously, from reported 10 partially damaged yesterday to now 60, then eight totally damaged, to 45, now totaling to 105 against 18 yesterday.

On infrastructure, an increase of more than P5 million was noted. From reported P4.233,000 yesterday to P9,856,353 today, broken down as follows: Bridges – P4,000,000 and; roads – P5,856,354. Damages on agriculture also increase by almost P2 million, from P35,177,510 as reported yesterday to P37,083,980 today.

Continued monitoring are done province-wide, while distribution of relief goods by the Provincial Social Welfare and Development assisted by SARAS and the Philippine Red Cross to affected families are on-going. Families of casualties were also extended burial assistance. (PIA-Agusan del Sur)
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Mayor Amante declares city “safe” but state of calamity still enforced

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY (6 January) - Rains eased here today (January 6) and flood waters in some areas have subsided, thus making the chief executive declared the city “safe” but state of calamity still remained to be enforced.

In today’s assessment meeting of the Local Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (LDRRMC), Mayor Ferdinand M. Amante said the city is already out of danger as of the moment and it is but appropriate that city will be declared safe.

“Since we’re already out of danger, I will have to call for a declaration of safety so that we can disperse our teams in the disaster operation center,” he said.

Amante clarified that the declaration of safety has been called upon but the state of calamity is not lifted yet. “This body has no power to lift the declaration of state of calamity because it’s the job of the Sangguniang Panlungsod,” the Mayor said.

The official also said the city government is set to conduct a re-training of the rescue and operation team in coordination with the barangay team to ensure that rescue operations will be conducted smoothly.

It can be recalled that the Sangguniang Panlungsod on Tuesday, January 4 enacted SP Resolution No. 004-2011 declaring the city under state of calamity. The resolution was further approved on Wednesday, January 5, 2011. (PIA-Caraga)
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Butuan Mayor assured by gov't. agencies of augmentation funds for flood victims

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY (6 January) – With flood water now subsiding in some areas of the city, Mayor Ferdinand M. Amante, Jr. recently said other government agencies will extend their assistance if calamity fund is not enough for the relief operations and rehabilitation of some infrastructures that were destroyed during the recent calamity that hits the city and the entire region, in general.

The assurance was made by the official in a press conference held Wednesday, January 5, 2010 at Father Saturnino Urios University (FSUU) gymnasium, this city.

Speaking before the local tri-media, Amante said if rain continuous to hit the city and if the 16 million pesos calamity fund is not enough, the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and the national government will not hesitate to extend their assistance.

Also, the city’s executive chief said all barangays may use their calamity funds once the area is declared under the state of calamity.

Meanwhile, City Social Welfare and Development head Ms. Aldeberan Mordeno also said families who were evacuated to respective barangay evacuation centers were given attention and relief operation were distributed properly.

The city was declared under state of calamity on Wednesday following the continuous rains experienced in the region causing the rising of the water levels and the consequent overflowing of Agusan River.

Based on the previous floodings experienced here, when Agusan River overflowed, the city proper flooded causing business establishments to close and some residents evacuated. (PIA-Caraga)


City dad to public: refrain from sending wrong text messages in the height of disaster

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY (6 January) – In the wake of massive flooding in the city and the whole region, text messages were circulating on Wednesday, January 5, 2010 informing the public that an impending flashflood will occur here, Mayor Ferdinand M. Amante Jr. appealed to the public to refrain from sending such inaccurate information which may cause panic and eventually lead to chaos.

According to Mayor Amante, this is not the right time for disseminating inaccurate information that may somehow turn into a joke. “I would like to make an appeal to the public not to send information that may lead to panic and chaos. In times like this, we have to be responsible in disseminating information for the benefit of the majority,” Amante said.

In a related development, Father John Christian U. Young, President of Father Saturnino Urios University (FSUU) here also informed the public that the text message circulated earlier on the possible flash out that may happen to the city due to an impending flashflood is not coming from their end.

DPWH-Caraga, on the other hand through their information officer Ms. Connie Calo said, text circulating on Wednesday morning (January 5) regarding a dam that is set to be released in Davao City is not coming from their office.

Meanwhile, DOH-Caraga through information officer Ms. Sunshine Alipayo also informed the public that DOH is not sending the text message allegedly notifying the public that DOH in San Francisco, Agusan del Sur made an advisory to public to watch out for flashflood. Alipayo said they don’t have DOH office in this area.

Also, PIA-Caraga is enjoining the public to coordinate to proper authorities and agencies in order to have accurate and real information to avoid unnecessary anxiety and fears that will eventually cause chaos. (PIA-Caraga)
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Caraga Disaster registers P 50.5M damage in agriculture

By: Robert E. Roperos

BUTUAN CITY (6 January) – The Regional Office here of the Department of Agriculture (DA) on Wednesday, January 5 reported that damages in agriculture now reached to Php 50,467,061 after the region was hit my massive flooding and landslides due to northeast monsoon affecting the Visayas and Mindanao regions.

DA’s report revealed that of the four provinces and three cities comprising the region, Butuan City has the biggest damaged in agricultural products which posted 46.81 percent of the region’s total damages or Php 23,627,146.

A total of 3,045 hectares of rice fields were submerged with flood waters destroying palays, affecting 1,604 farmers, the DA report said. Also, 20 hectares of corn field were destroyed costing Php5,546,400, while 20 hectares planted with other crops were recorded that costs Php1,024,000.

Surigao del Norte followed with Php11,925,075 damages in rice, corn, other crops and livestocks. This comprises 23.63 percent.

Agusan del Sur came in next with Php 7,623,600; Agusan del Norte – Php 4,398,040; and Surigao del Sur – Php 2,893,200.

Summing it up, rice products were greatly damaged by the calamity amounting to Php 35,524,746. This is followed by other crops with Php 9,000,625; Corn products with Php 5,730,400; and livestock costing Php 211,290. (PIA-Caraga)
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MGB-13 monitors status of mining companies in Surigao Norte
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By: Susil Ragas

Surigao del Norte (January 6) – As heavy rains continue to pour in the entire province, the Monitoring Team of Mines and GeoSciences Bureau (MGB-13) has been monitoring round the clock the situation of mining companies operating along the coastal line of Claver town this province.

The MGB-13 report said the silt settling ponds of Shenzou Mining Group Corporation (SMGC) located at Hinadkaban Cove was observed to be stable. However, the coastal water along Hinadkaban Cove was noted to be turbid. Company officials from SMGC explained that excessive rainfall contributed much to the turbidity of the coastal water. Accordingly, a team of SMGC operators with fleet and mine equipments were already deployed for emergencies.

Also, the Monitoring team reported that the silt settling ponds of Platinum Group Metals Company (PGMC) located along Kinalablaban River were observed to be stable but the coastal water at the bay was turbid, there were no landslides around the area and a team of PGMC operators were also deployed for emergencies and monitoring.

The silt settling ponds of Taganito Mining Corporation (TMC) located along Taga and Hayanggabon River were also stable but the floodwater from Taga and Hayanggabon River were observed to be turbid. TMC Company officials said as soon as the weather improves they will initiate a field investigation to detect sources of wayward run-off water at the upstream portion of the said river.

A minor, non-catastrophic landslide was also reported at the boundary between the barangays of Taganito and Urbiztondo covering almost the entire width of the national highway. Taganito Mining Corporation (TMC) immediately responded by fielding a fleet of mine equipment to initially unload the debris to restore the free-flow of traffic.

As of press time, there were no reports of casualty induced by the intense rainfall within the area. (PIA-Surigao del Norte with reports from MGB-13)


Feature: TMC and partners build new homes for the community

Claver, Surigao del Norte (January 6) -Taganito Mining Corporation (TMC) in partnership with Gawad Kalinga has opened doors to indigent residents of Barangay Taganito, Claver, Surigao del N orte and the IP tribal communities to own new homes.
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Eighty families of Barangay Taganito can now reside in 40 concrete duplex-type houses built on a lot donated by the Barangay LGU. Aside from these houses, amenities like water and electricity connection which are basic to the quality way of life of the recipients were also provided.

Recipients to these housing units are families that were identified as the poorest of the poor among the residents of Barangay Taganito. Selection process was based on the criteria set by Gawad Kalinga, the partner-NGO of TMC known for its housing project nationwide.

As practiced in several housing projects of Gawad Kalinga, recipient-families are to render 100 hours of voluntary work during the construction phase as their counterpart.
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On the other hand, the IP Tribal Communities of Taganito and Urbiztondo will soon be housed in Punta Naga, Claver. Surrounded by sprawling mountains and breath taking view of the coast, the site will be filled with colored single-detached houses for the more than 120 Mamanwa families of Urbiztondo and Taganito. A common tribal hall, elementary school, health center and motor pool will also be constructed for the ease and comfort of the IPs.

According to Reynaldo dela Rosa, Sr. Development Communication Specialist of the TMC, funds used for this multi-million settlement project for the IPs in Punta Naga is sourced from the corporate funds of Taganito Mining Corporation and Taganito Mining Corporation-Hydrometallurgical Processing Plant as part of their Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) efforts. (TMC/MGB-13/PIA-Surigao del Norte)


LDRRMOC advices to lift the suspension of classes in Butuan City

Around 7:00 o'clock last night (Jan. 5), when Local Disaster Risk Reduction Management Operation Center (LDRRMOC) formerly City Disaster Coordinating Center (CDCC) headed by Honorable Butuan City Mayor Ferdinand M. Amante Jr gave the go signal to lift the suspension of classes althrough the city in elementary and high school, both private and public schools. However, the suspension is still advised to retain for those areas still flooded.

The said suspension of classes yesterday was to ensure the security of the students, school teachers and staff, from any untoward incident which may happen due to the impending flood threat brought about by the heavy downpour of rain here in Caraga region especially those areas already submerged with flood waters. (Agnes B. Tumulak, PIO-Butuan City/PIA-Caraga)

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Tagalog News: Bilang sa mga apektadong pamilya sa baha sa Agusan del Sur, umabot na sa mahigit 31, 000

Umabot na sa 31,687 ang bilang sa mga pamilyang apektado sa lalawigan sa Agusan del Sur sa tubig baha na may 155,475 na indibidwal sa loob ng 120 na mga barangay sa lalawigan na apektado sa baha.

Ang may pinakamataas na bilang sa mga apektadong pamilya ay makikita sa bayan ng Esperanza Agusan del Sur.

Apat ang patay, isa ang missing at anim ang sugatan.

Walong bahay ang nasira at sampu ang partially damage.

Sa report ng Regional Disaster Risk Reduction & Management Council sa lalawigan, initial damage sa infrastructure sa ngayon ay P233 milyon at mahigit sa P35 milyon naman sa agrikultura.

Sa ngayon bumabalik na sa kani-kanilang tahanan ang ibang evacuees matapos bumaba ang level sa tubig baha pero marami pa rin sa mga ito ang nananatili sa 17 evacuation center sa lalawigan.

Sa kabila nito nagpalabas naman ng warning advisory si Governor Eddie Bong Plaza sa mga LDRRMC na maging vigilant at paalalahanan ang mga residente na prone sa landslide at flasflood na tumira sa mga safe na lugar. (dxBC-RMN Butuan/PIA-Caraga)

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Tagalog News: RDRRMC, nagpalabas ngayon ng advisory sa mga Caraganon dahil sa malakas na pag-ulan ngayon sa Compostella Valley

Nagpalabas ngayon ng advisory ang Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council sa Caraga Region sa pamamagitan ni OCD Caraga Regional Director Blanche Gobenciong para sa mga Caraganon lalong-lalo na sa mga naninirahan sa gilid ng Agusan River.

Sa advisory na inilabas sinasabing maging alerto ang lahat ng mga taong naninirahan malapit sa bundok at mga ilog sa Caraga Region dahil na rin sa malakas na pag-ulan ngayon sa Compostella Valley na maging dahilan ng pagtaas sa ngayon ng level sa tubig sa Agusan River.

Nanawagan naman si Dir. Gobenciong sa mga residente na ireport kaagad sa lokal na otoridad ang mga insidenteng mangyari sa kanilang lugar para mabigyan kaagad ng aksyon.

Sinabi ng opisyal kailangang “Proactive actions–Evacuation rather than Rescue”, kaya dapat magsilikas na ang lahat ng mga mamamayan na naninirahan sa mga lugar sa rehiyon na prone sa flashflood at landslide.

Nilinaw naman ni Gobenciong na huwag kaagad maniwala ang publiko sa mga text messages na kumalakat sa ngayon para maisawan ang panic.

Sabi ng opisyal, dapat gawin ng mga mamamayan na maging alerto sa bawat oras at makinig sa mga balita lalo na sa radyo at makipagcoordinate sa local authorities. (dxBC-RMN Butuan/PIA-Caraga)

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Patay sa baha sa Caraga, 18 na og posibleng musaka pa

BUTUAN CITY - Padayon gihapon ang gihimong consolidation sa Caraga Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council kon Caraga-RDRRMC sa ihap sa mga namatay sa pagbaha ning rehiyon uban sa dugang ihap sa mga casualties nga nakuha sa Police Regional Office 13 gikan sa nagkada-iyang munisipyo.

Sa latest monitoring sa maong buhatan kaganinang buntag, 16 ka mga patay pa ang ilang na-consolidate kondiin wala pa niini ma-apil ang narekober kagahapon sa alas 3:55 sa hapon sa patay'ng lawas sa 28-anyos nga ulitawong si Marvin Gonzales, taga-Purok 5, Brgy. Sta. Irene, Sibagat, Agusan del Sur human nabanlas sa kusog nga bul-og sa tubig sa Wawa River dihang nag-atang og troso nga ma-anod.

Nasayrang narekober usab ang patay'ng lawas ni Felicitas Macuno, 65-anyos, residente sa Purok 7, Brgy. San Salvador, Prosperidad, Agusan del Sur kinsa ka-uban ni Roselyn Porras, 16-anyos, dalaga, parehong nalumos sa Kadluma creek human nadala sa sulog niini og kung i-apil kini sa listahan sa Caraga-RDRRMC, 18 na ang patay sa baha ning rehiyon.

Gila-umang musaka pa ang maong ihap tungod kay hangtud karon, padayon pang gipangita si Maxwell Tajonera, residente sa Brgy. Aras-asan, Cagwait, Surigao del Sur kinsa nadala sa tubig baha sa national highway sa Sitio Sampinit, Brgy. Unaban, Tago, Surigao del Sur dihang mitabang pagtangtang sa railing nga mibara sa ligid sa dyip nga ilang gisakyan.

Gipangita usab hangtud sa pagkutlo niini nga balita ang 19-anyos nga si Ronnie Jupson, 4th year high school sa Bunawan National High School og residente sa Purok 3-B, Sitio Mandagao, Brgy. Poblacion, lungsod sa Bunawaqn, Agusan del Sur.

Misulay matud pa siya pagtabok sa Tagbuaya Creek pasado ala 1:30 kagahapon sa hapon apan nadala sa kusog nga sulog sa tubig hinungdan sa iyang pagka-anod. (dxBR-Bombo Radyo Butuan/PIA-Caraga)
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PDRRMC bares initial reports of flooding in Surigao Norte

By: Susil Ragas

Surigao del Norte (January 6) - The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (PDRRMC) reported today that only one person was reported dead as a result of the recent floods that hit the province.

He was identified as Roberto Dalangin, 35 years old, married and a native of Barangay Cawilan, Tubod. Investigation revealed that subject person was last seen at Purok 5, Sitio Tugonan, Barangay Mabini, Surigao City while trying to retrieve some falcata logs floating along the river but was swept away by the strong current.

As of 9am of January 6, PDRRMC report revealed that a total of 7,307 families or 38,865 persons from 85 barangays provincewide were affected, broken down as follows: Claver – 695 families or 2,415 persons; Gigaquit- 900 families or 4,688 persons; Malimono- 2,627 families or 15,455 persons; Placer- 474 families or 906 persons; Sison – 197 families or 854 persons; Tagana-an- 2,000 families or 10,400 persons; Tubod – 193 families or 965 persons; and Surigao City – 67 families or 309 persons.

In Siargao Island: Burgos- 276 families or 1636 persons; Dapa – 93 families or 511 persons; Sta. Monica – 408 families or 2,290 persons and; Socorro – 19 families or 105 persons. Flood victims totaling to 8,149 families or 41,574 persons were registered throughout the province however only 424 families were evacuated in their respective municipalities.

Reports also revealed that three houses were totally damaged, while 19 were partially damaged. Damages in infrastructure reached an estimated cost of P108,915,000. The rest of the infra damages are still under thorough estimation.

In agriculture, running estimate now reached up to P23, 507,125. PDRRMC report also revealed that there is still in-accessibility to some areas. Life lines have been restored to normalcy such as the supply of potable water in Surigao City after the 2 days disrupted services and the power supply of electric coops since they cut off power supply when flood waters were high. (PIA-Surigao del Norte)
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Fisheries and aquatic resources register P11.8M damages in Caraga region

By: Nora CL Molde

BUTUAN CITY, Jan. 6 (PIA) - The Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR) on Thursday, January 6, reported an estimated damaged of P11,789,195 in the fisheries and aquatic resources after the region was hit by massive flooding due to the effect of northeast monsoon and tail-end of cold front in Caraga region and other regions of the Visayas and Mindanao.

BFAR revealed that Surigao del Norte has recorded the biggest damaged in fisheries and aquatic resources having a total of P5,343,575. Damages include 52 units of fish cages, 66 hectares of fishponds, 25 units of fish corals, one unit of payao, and five hectares of seaweed farms.

Surigao del Sur followed with P3,465,500 damages in the 261 hectares of fishponds, two units of bag nets, six units of deep-sea fish corals, six units of shallow fish corals, three units of Solar Dryer, 14 hectares of seaweeds, guard house, pump boat and fishing gears.

Agusan del Norte also incurred an estimated damage of P1,874,320 that include three units fish cages and 23 units fish corals in Butuan City and 26.2 hectares of fishponds in Magallanes.

Agusan del Sur also has a total of P630,000 damages on fishponds, fish cages and fish pens.

The Province of Dinagat Islands also sustain a total of P475,800 damaged in fisheries and aquatic resources which include 4.5 hectares of seaweed farm, six units of fish cages, fish pond, fish sanctuary, fish pen and the provincial seaweed nursery. (PIA-Caraga)


No heavy damages for Caraga TREs -DOT-Caraga

By: Jennifer P. Gaitano

BUTUAN CITY – In a written statement from the Department of Tourism (DOT) Caraga Regional Office here bared that in the province of Agusan del Norte, the Almont Lake Resort in Kitcharao experienced flooding in eight (8) of its rooms, yet there were no heavy damages on the properties reported, and its personnel have anticipated occurrences of flooding which helped prepare the area for calamities, and therefore no guests were hurt or injured.

According to DOT, in Agusan del Sur, the governor meet all mayors within the province to assess the extent of damages brought about by the floods. There were however no reports of heavy damages in tourism-related establishments (TREs).

Also, in Surigao City, it was learned that TREs in the said city were spared of the floods’ damages, areas flooded in the city’s outskirt barangays only wherein there where no TREs.

Meanwhile, in Surigao del Norte, the effects of the floods were limited to Burgos, Placer, Taganaan and Malimono where there are no existing TREs.

DOT also reported that the area in Surigao del Sur is submerged to water but there are no serious reports of damages to TREs. (PIA-Caraga)
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To abate MRT/LRT fare hike, operational restructuring needed – chiz

Fare increase in the Metro Rail Transit (MRT) and the Light Rail Transit (LRT 1 and LRT 2) can be aborted but the two offices each need to restructure its operations, Senator Chiz Escudero today said.

The impending fare hikes is endorsed by Malacaňang although new fares have not been disclosed yet.

Escudero said the MRT can pursue a stop-gap measure by way of revenue sharing from non-rail revenues realized from ads and lease operations of the MRT Development Corporation (MRTDevCo).

MRTDevCo has been collecting and receiving income from ads and lease operations but the Metro Rail Transit Corporation, which operates the MRT, failed to settle its billions of pesos in outstanding debt to the government. which already totaled to more than a billion pesos.

“If only the government gets its rightful share from the non-rail revenues it can be used to subsidized fares. The government should look into its collectibles”.

In other rails in the world, non-rail revenues are actually used to supplement the income of the railway system itself so that it can subsidize lower rates to commuters.

Escudero has been pushing for a congressional inquiry to determine ownership and full operational control of MRT 3 so that proper steps could be taken on how to deal with fare subsidies, among others.

An Asian Development Bank report in 2008 recommended that “MRT 3 operations should be handed over to the Light Rail Transit Authority to achieve sector rationalization”.

Escudero said the government is hampered from taking full steps in addressing and abating fare hikes because of the ownership and operational issues.

In the same ADB report, it added that “the buy-out of MRT3 needs to consider smooth turn-over of management to LRTA, but currently this aspect is not being addressed”.

The senator said that after the government has cleared the above-mentioned issues, as well as its long-overdue collectibles, improving non-rail revenues could follow.

A Japan Bank for International Cooperation (JBIC) study conducted in 2007 showed that in LRT and MRT, non-rail revenue can improve by increasing rates of ads and retail tenant leased areas so that fare will not sharply increase. LRT’s non-rail revenue share is only a measly 2.6% of the total earnings. Whereas in neighboring countries, the government gets a 20% share from its non-revenue collection.

“The real challenge now is to restructure the whole operations to create positive benefits for the riding public and society at large” Escudero said. (Office of Senator Chiz Escudero/PIA-Caraga)