GenSan gives P3.5 million cash for ‘Yolanda’ victims

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (MindaNews/29 November)– The city government will deliver tomorrow (Saturday) P3.5 million in financial assistance to the local governments of Ormoc and Tacloban cities to assist the ongoing relief operations for survivors of super typhoon “Yolanda” in the area.

Lawyer Arnel Zapatos, city administrator, said Friday City Mayor Ronnel Rivera will leave for Eastern Visayas to personally hand over the financial assistance to the distressed local government units.

He said the local government opted to instead deliver cash assistance to the affected areas instead of sending relief packs due to time constraints.

“Procuring and repacking 10,000 family food packs from the P3.5M would entail huge time, hence the decision to donate the said amount in the form of cash for Ormoc and Leyte given the urgency of the situation” Zapatos said in a statement.

He said the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRMC) convened for an emergency meeting Friday morning to finalize the matter.

The CDRRMC, which is headed by the city mayor, is composed of city elected officials and department heads, barangay officials, representatives of national government agencies and accredited non-government organizations.

The council unanimously approved during the meeting an urgent resolution “favoring cash donations to Ormoc and Tacloban,” amending its previous resolution for the allocation of P3.5 million for the procurement of relief items for the typhoon victims.

The CDRRMC passed a resolution last November 13 allocating some P10 million from the city’s disaster quick response funds as relief assistance for victims of typhoon “Yolanda.”

Of the appropriation, P6.5 million was set aside as financial assistance while the remaining P3.5 million would be utilized for the delivery of 10,000 relief packs.

The council’s resolution was unanimously endorsed by the city council in a special session held on Nov. 15.

On top of the cash assistance, the city government earlier sent family food packs and non-food relief items that were donated by local residents for the typhoon victims.

The City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO), which spearheaded the relief campaign, had sent the donated relief goods in batches through the Philippine Navy.

A week after Yolanda’s onslaught in the Visayas region last November 8, the local government sent its mobile hospital to Tacloban City to augment the Department of Health (DOH) medical and relief operations.

The mobile hospital, which was acquired by the city government early this year, is being manned by a team of medical personnel from the city health office led by Dr.Lalaine Calonzo.

Rebecca Magante, CSWDO chief, said the city’s medical team was included in the Mindanao cluster group that was mobilized by the DOH in Leyte and Samar provinces.

The group includes medical volunteers from Davao and Tagum cities, she said.

Among those catered by the mobile hospital were surgical patients with lacerated wounds and fractures as well as other medical cases, she added. (MindaNews)