disaster relief

More than 300,000 food packs sent to the Visayas – OPAV

Inday Espina-Varona
More than 300,000 food packs sent to the Visayas  – OPAV

Linemen from the Northern Samar Electric Cooperative, Inc. (NORSAMELCO) arrive in Maasin City to restore power to the Southern Leyte Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office

Southern Leyte Provincial Government Facebook page

In three Visayas regions, 5.92 million persons or 1.67 million families in 6,509 barangays struggle in the aftermath of the typhoon

The Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas on Tuesday, January 4, said that residents of three regions received more than 300,000 family food packs and cash aid since Typhoon Odette rampaged across the central Philippines on December 16 and the early hours of December 17, 2021.

In a status report, the OPAV said Typhoon Odette affected 5.92 million persons or 1.67 million families in the Visayas.

The OPAV report said 359 persons died from typhoon related causes, with Central Visayas (Region VII) accounting for 291 deaths. Western Visayas had 53 deaths and Eastern Visayas, 15. 

Odette hit a total of 6,509 barangays across three regions, according to OPAV, which had earlier listed under-served areas.

The OPAV report said 887,957 houses were damaged in three regions. For “totally damaged” houses, the office only had a figure for Central Visayas: 172,154. 

OPAV gave a consolidated list of relief services delivered to the Visayas as of January 3.

The Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) sent to its Region VI office 65,840 family food packs (FFPs) worth P34,627,683.28. OPAV said the region has 470,746 affected families.

Region VII got 161,811 FFPs worth P85,759,830. The region has 946,143 affected families, according to OPAV.

Region VIII, with 251,076 affected families, received 72,500 FFPs worth P37,173,283.47.

OPAV said the DSWD also gave P420,000 in cash aid to Individuals in Crisis (AICS) in Region VI.

It said 497 beneficiaries from 20 barangays in 4 cities and towns in Negros Oriental received P2,485,000 (P5,000 for each recipient) during President Rodrigo Duterte’s December 29 visit.

The money, OPAV said, went to residents of Manjuyod, Mabinay, Bindoy, and Bais City.

DTI Negros Oriental also distributed before the year end P1.120M worth of Bangon Negosyo Kits (P8,000 each) to 140 micro firms affected by Typhoon Odette, the OPAV said on January 3.

On the lingering power woes in the Visayas, OPAV said on January 3 that the Visayan Electric Company has energized 132,397 or 27.92% out of the 474,182 affected customers, and restored 388 or 71.32% out of the 544 power line segments, within its franchise area.

“Restoration is taking longer in areas where Visayan Electric’s distribution facilities sustained heavy damage such as toppled poles, downed wires, and damaged transformers,” the OPAV said.

Visayan Electric is the second largest electric utility in the Philippines. It serves the cities of Cebu, Mandaue, Talisay, Naga and four municipalities of the greater part of Metro Cebu – Liloan, Consolacion, Minglanilla and San Fernando. Its website says the franchise service covers an area of about 674 km2 with an estimated population of 1.73 million.

From the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas

In Southern Leyte, the provincial government said on January 4 that linemen from Northern Samar Electric Cooperative, Inc. (NORSAMELCO) arrived in Maasin City to restore power to the Southern Leyte Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office.

On January 2, a 23-member crew from the Tarlac and Zambales electric cooperatives arrived in Negros Oriental to help bring back electricity to devastated areas, including upland barangays.

Heavy rains over the New Year’s weekend have caused landslides and closed roads, hampering relief and rehabilitation efforts in the Visayas. – Rappler.com