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State of calamity in WV for 6 months

BY GILBERT P. BAYORAN

Western Visayas, composed of Negros Occidental, Panay and Guimaras Islands, along with three other regions in the country, were placed yesterday under a state of calamity for six months, as a result of Severe Tropical Storm Paeng.

Under Proclamation 84 signed yesterday by President Ferdinand Marcos Jr., the state of calamity shall remain in force and effect for six months, unless earlier lifted by the President.

The Regional Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council 6 reported that 348,780 families, or 1,321,601 individuals, in 2,249 barangays were affected by Typhoon Paeng in Western Visayas.

In Negros Occidental, trough of Tropical Storm Paeng left behind an estimated P256.8 million in damageto agricultural crops.

A total of 7,233.11 hectares of agricultural crops, including rice and other high value crops were damaged in 178 barangays of Negros Occidental, affecting 6,915 farmers, according to a data furnished by the Office of the Provincial Agriculture to Gov. Eugenio Jose, Lacson.

The Provincial Veterinarian Office also reported livestock damage initially reported at P982,180 affecting 864 head of animals, with damage to facilities estimated at P30,000. The total affected residents in Negros Occidental was placed at 82,929 individuals, as November 2.

In his issued proclamations, Marcos Jr. said he heeded the recommendation of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC) to declare a state of calamity after Paeng “caused the loss of lives, destruction of property, damage to agriculture and critical infrastructures, and disruption of means of livelihood and normal way of life of the populations in the affected areas.”

According to Proclamation 84, the declaration of a state of calamity would enable the government, as well as the private sector, to “hasten the rescue, recovery, relief, and rehabilitation efforts.” Placing the affected regions under a state of calamity will also help “effectively control” the prices of basic necessities and prime commodities, it read.

Under the proclamation, the national government and the local government units (LGUs) would be given “ample latitude” to use appropriate funds for rescue, recovery, relief, and rehabilitation efforts. Proclamation 84 will also ensure the “continuous” provision of basic services to the affected populations, based on the law.*

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