Council allows some brgys to declare ‘state of calamity’ PDF Print E-mail
Thursday, 08 August 2013 13:24

The City Council, in its regular session yesterday, passed a resolution allowing certain barangays, badly hit by last weekend’s flashfloods and landslides, to declare their respective villages under a state of calamity.

The motion was presented by Acting Floor Leader, District 1 Councilor Charlie Mariano, who based his action on Vice Mayor Cesar Iturralde’s comment that the City Engineer’s Office is just waiting for flood-stricken barangays to be a the state of calamity, before they can fix the damaged infrastructures thereon.

With the concurrence of other councilors present, Mariano required all affected barangays to follow two important conditions to qualify for the calamity status.

“We have required these affected barangays to comply with the necessary requirements, such as submitting to us (City Council), their respective barangay resolutions, justifying why their area should be under a state of calamity, and concurrence to the same, by the City Social Welfare Office (OCSW),” Mariano said.

Vice Mayor Iturralde on the other hand, said that “upon completion and subsequent submission of those requirements to this august body, it will automatically, become effective, meaning, these affected barangays can now be considered under the state of calamity, allowing them to use portion of their respective calamity funds for purposes of economic recovery, even without further deliberations on the matter by the city council”.

Meanwhile, District 1 Councilor Cesar “Jawo” Jimenez, disaster committee chairman, has called for the lifting of the September 2012 calamity declaration for Zamboanga City.

“The problem is, City Engineer (Vicente) Despalo is reserved on lifting such declaration, claiming that his office has still many projects to implement, especially, fixing of damaged infrastructures, brought about by last year’s flashfloods and landslides, that also affected several barangays in the city,” Jimenez said.

Some 1,000 local residents, mostly staying along riverbanks had to be evacuated last Saturday and  Sunday, after rampaging floodwaters submerged their houses as well as destroying more than a million pesos worth of agricultural crops and fish pens in the barangays of Vitali, Curuan, Bolong, Manicahan, Boalan, Guiwan, Labuan and Limpapa, respectively.

Two children died, when landslide debris covered their house at Sitio Cumati, Barangay Limpapa, last Saturday morning. — Philip Abuy