Philippines

Guv says Benguet people more ready for disaster

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LA TRINIDAD, Benguet, Oct. 19(PIA) -- As the province of Benguet commemorated the fifth anniversary of typhoon Pepeng on October 9, Governor Nestor Fongwan said that the people of Benguet are more prepared for calamity.

Fongwan said that after the Little Kibungan tragedy in barangay Puguis this town, that left at least 70 dead and several families homeless, and the other major disasters that occurred in the province, people in Benguet are now more conscious of their environment during calamities.

“Benguet people are more aware of their surroundings, they learn to take care of nature and they now pay attention to announcements of the local government units during disaster,” he said.

He also bared that the province has focused on upholding disaster preparedness and awareness among stakeholders with the mission of establishing safe and resilient communities. He added that they have invested on trainings needed by the responders from the provincial level down to barangay level for disaster preparedness.

The various local government units through their Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (MDRRMC) have also conducted various activities such as DRRM trainings, summits, drills and orientations for various audience including schools and offices to make then ready and prepared during disasters.

The provincial government thru the private sector partners has also invested on some emergency and disaster equipment.

On October 9, the community of Sitio Little Kibungan in Puguis, La Trinidad held a holy mass for the people who perished during the 2009 Typhoon Pepeng tragedy. The families and relatives lighted 77 candles representing the individuals who died that time.

Families affected during the tragedy are still appealing for help from the local and national government for their relocation site.

According to Fongwan, the provincial government is fastracking the negotiations between the municipal government of La Trinidad and the Benguet State University at the area identified thru a Presidential Proclamation in Tawang, La Trinidad. (JDP/Redjie Melvic Cawis & UB Interns PIA-CAR)