CDRRMC recommends state of calamity in ZC PDF Print E-mail
Tuesday, 12 January 2016 11:49

bySHEILA COVARRUBIAS

The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRMC) in a meeting Monday afternoon strongly endorsed to the City Council the declaration of a state of calamity in Zamboanga City due to the receding water flow at the Pasonanca diversion dam, now at a critical level.

This, pursuant to a request from the Zamboanga City Water District (ZCWD) for the local government unit to declare the state of calamity to allow the firm to institute contingency plans with the use of the calamity funds.

As this developed, Mayor Beng Climaco, CDRRMC chairperson, has directed the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office to work with the ZCWD, City Agriculturist Office and the City Environment and Natural Resources Officer (OCENR) to expedite the conduct of mitigating measures on water and energy conservation.

The ZCWD gas started implementation of the water rationing scheme in the city effective Friday, January 8 due to the continuous decline in the water level.

The rotating water services interruption is only one of the few activities that the water firm seeks to undertake to mitigate the effects of “one of the worst if not the worst El  Niño phenomenon compared to that of 1997-1988.”

In a letter to Mayor Climaco, ZCWD general manager Leonardo Vasquez said other action plans have been lined up for execution during emergencies, require the necessary funding that will be sourced from the calamity fund.

As of now and given the continuous decline in the water level, the water firm’s calamity fund could not be accessed unless a state of calamity will be declared by the local government through the City Council upon the recommendation of the CDRRMC.

The El Niño has been affecting various sectors of the community specifically the farmers and fisherfolk.

With the declaration, the disbursement of calamity funds for emergency measures particularly in cushioning the effects of the dry spell.

The council is set to meet this afternoon to discuss the matter. — Sheila Covarrubias