GENERAL LUNA, Siargao Island (MindaNews /15 January) – Several residents in Barangay Catangnan have been summoned by their barangay captain for getting donated construction materials beyond what they need to repair their houses destroyed by super typhoon ‘Odette’ on December 16.
“Several of them were even selling the GI sheets, nails and plywood because they got more than necessary to repair the actual damage,” Catangnan barangay chair Joselito Saavedra said.
Saavedra said he was told by Governor Francisco Matugas to file charges against them.
“Pakasohan gajod ini sila kay mga bintahoso,” Saavedra said. (They should face charges for taking advantage of the situation).
‘Odette’ made its first landfall in the Philippines on Siargao Island at 1:30 p.m. on December 16.
The village of Catangnan, which hosts the world-famous Cloud Nine surfing spot, also hosts most of the restaurants and resorts in town. Almost all of these, however, were destroyed by ‘Odette.’
The village received donations from various donors.
But Saavedra explained that what happened was the help from various donors was not evenly distributed to our 600 households because of the (donors’) lack of coordination with the barangay.”
“I’d like to remind all donors to coordinate with the barangay so help will (reach the residents in) a fair and orderly manner,” said Saavedra, as he expressed his gratitude to the donors for sharing their resources.
“Rest assured, help will be delivered fairly to the people,” he said.
Catangnan resident Angeline Espejon said she did not receive as much help as the others.
“Private donors have prerogatives but their help has to be systematically arranged, to avoid trouble just like the case in our village,” she said.
She said help from the private sector is faster while government help is “very slow.”
One of the residents summoned in the barangay said their names were on the list of recipients.
“Why refuse if it’s coming from our friends and private individuals,” the resident said. (Roel N. Catoto / MindaNews)