ILOILO CITY, Philippines —Damage to Iloilo province’s agricultural sector caused by Typhoon Odette (Rai) has already hit P14.48 million in only three towns, according to the latest report by the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO).
As of 4 pm of December 17, Friday, most damaged were rice crops totaling P7,644,000, followed by corn crops with P6,090,000, damaged fishing boats with P710,000, other crops (bananas, papaya, etc.) with P32,000, poultry and fowls with P6,259, and livestock with P3,000.
Only Ajuy and Balasan towns submitted damage to rice and corn crops, with the former having P6,048,000 in rice damaged and the latter having P1,596,000.00.
PDRRMO chief Jerry Bionat said that the damage to rice crops was expected.
While Odette’s impact would only make 50% to 60% of rice crops viable, Bionat said this was still a better turnout because there was no massive flooding. Had waters risen in farms, the province’s mature rice crops would have been wiped out, he pointed out.
“We don’t have problems with the flood, but because of the [rice’s] maturing age it means the plant is already tall. Because of the strong winds, the [rice plant] will fall down and the mature rice will be affected. This means that only 50 to 60% would be viable,” Bionat told media.
For corn, Balasan sustained P5,940,000 in damages while Ajuy had P150,000.
The northern Iloilo fishing town of Concepcion sustained the most damage to fishing boats with 23, costing P690,000, and Ajuy with 3 costing P20,000.
Remaining agricultural damage in other crops (P32,000), poultry and farm (P6,259), and livestock (P3,000) were all incurred in Ajuy.
The PDRRMO’s report also indicated that Odette destroyed 274 houses and partially damaged 12,912 others.
Guimbal town lost the most houses (106), followed by other towns including Tigbauan (79), Alimodian (31), Leganes (29), San Joaquin (18), Maasin (4), Pototan and Lemery (2 each), and Lambunao, Dueñas, and San Rafael (1 each).
Lemery had the most partially-damaged houses (6,551), followed by Tigbauan (1,889), Dumangas (1,629), Guimbal (744), Alimodian (566), Lambunao (503), Sta. Barbara (481), San Enrique (200), Ajuy (94), Anilao (70), Pototan (65), Maasin (42), San Joaquin (39), New Lucena (20), San Rafael (15), and Dueñas (4).
The PDRRMO also reported as of 12 noon of December 17 that a total of 8,386 families with 32,938 individuals were evacuated due to Odette. – Rappler.com
Joseph B.A. Marzan is a Visayas-based journalist and an awardee of the Aries Rufo Journalism Fellowship.