ZAMBOANGA CITY (UPDATED) – Zamboanga City was placed under a state of calamity on Thursday, October 19, because of extensive flooding and landslides triggered by heavy rains since Saturday.
The Zamboanga City Council made the declaration shortly after it was recommended by the City Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (CDRRMC) chaired by Zamboanga City Mayor Beng Climaco.
The CDRRMC had passed a resolution asking the city council to declare a state of calamity in this city, citing the extensive damage to agriculture and infrastructure following the massive floods and storm surge triggered by the intertropical convergence zone.
Upon the request of Climaco, the Sangguniang Panlungsod convened in an emergency session on Thursday to act on the CDRRMC’s recommendation.
A report from the City Social Welfare and Development Office disclosed that the massive floods and storm surge had displaced a total of 3,666 families with 18,330 dependents in 17 mostly coastal barangays.
At least 7 people were reported dead, 158 houses totally destroyed, while 327 other houses were partially damaged.
In the agriculture sector, City Agriculturist Diosdado Palacat reported that 1,150 farmers were affected by the floods that destroyed 310 hectares of rice fields, 477 hectares of corn farms, and 144 hectares of vegetable farms.
Palacat also reported that the inclement weather had destroyed 200 hectares of seaweeds and 857 hectares of fishponds; and damaged irrigation systems.
The estimated cost of damage to agriculture is P45.970 million.
The City Engineer’s Office reported between P16 million to P20 million worth of infrastructure mostly riprapping, roads, bridges and slope protection destroyed.
Moh Arakama, Department of Interior and Local Government City Director, said the extent of the destruction caused by Typhoon Paolo warrants the declaration of a state of calamity in Zamboanga.
Climaco ordered classes in all levels in public and private schools to remain suspended until Thursday, as recommended by the CDRRMC, in anticipation of heavy rains brought by Typhoon Paolo. – Rappler.com
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