MANILA (Mabuhay) – President Benigno S. Aquino III wants communities redesigned such that they will not be as vulnerable to storm surges and other effects of powerful cyclones like super typhoon “Yolanda” (Haiyan).
The President, who was interviewed at the Ormoc City Airport Tuesday, said it pained him to learn of so many deaths because of the effects of Yolanda.
“Siyempre gusto natin malaman bakit umabot ng ganoon, mayroon pa ba tayong magagawa? Pwede ba nating ire-design ang communities para mas maging resistant to such things … ‘yung maski sa mamatayan, talagang mabigat sa kalooban ko ‘yun (We want to see if there is something we can do to prevent such a tragedy in the future. Can we redesign our communities to be more resistant to such occurrences? The deaths of so many people have weighed heavily on me),” he said.
Yolanda, one of the most powerful cyclones in recent history, barreled through parts of Visayas and Southern Luzon earlier this month. It left more than 3,000 dead in its wake.
Since Sunday, the President had been visiting areas in the Visayas that were affected by Yolanda. He returned to Manila Tuesday afternoon.
President Aquino said the concerned government agencies are already working on medical attention, power restoration, and helping people get their lives back to normal.
Meanwhile, the President said he is returning to Manila to make sure there are enough funds to provide for the needs of those affected.
He said he wanted to meet the Cabinet, including Agriculture Secretary Proceso Alcala, to follow up on the government’s plans to rehabilitate the coconut industry.
Also, he said he wants to talk to Budget Secretary Florencio Abad to make sure there is enough funding for related government programs.
Meanwhile, the President said he expects power and communications to be restored soonest, now that roads have been cleared in the affected areas.
He lauded residents for helping each other recover from Yolanda’s effects.
“Talagang bibilis at bibilis na rin sa susunod na araw, dahil lahat itong transportation glitches, ay unti-unti… tuloy-tuloy na hahanapan ng paraan para lalong mapabilis ang pag-ikot ng mga nagde-deliver. Talagang challenge, pero talagang naagapan ng napakaraming sector (We expect the recovery efforts to move faster in the coming days because the transportation glitches are being addressed. We are finding more ways to deliver relief items and services, and we are meeting the challenges with the help of so many sectors),” he said. (MNS)