MANILA (Mabuhay) — Malacanang on Wednesday said the government is prioritizing power restoration and the health and welfare of evacuees as Typhoon Glenda (international codename Rammasun) pummeled Metro Manila, its nearby provinces and the Bicol region.
Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said President Benigno Aquino III is on top of the situation as he is constantly getting updates from concerned government officials, who are on the ground to attend to the typhoon’s aftermath.
“Our priorities at this point is the health and welfare of evacuees, and the return of power and communications to communities. As developments arise and services are restored, rest assured the public will be kept informed,” Lacierda said.
He said the government has started clearing operations and assessment of the extent of the damage caused by the typhoon.
“The President is monitoring the situation as the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council, Department of Public Works and Highways, Metro Manila Development Authority, Department of Social Welfare and Development, with the Philippine National Police and the Armed Forces of the Philippines, attend to the evacuees, the surveying of vital structures, and the clearing of roads,” Lacierda said.
He asked for the cooperation and assistance of the public especially on clearing the roads as strong winds left several toppled trees and piles of leaves.
Secretary Lacierda said initial reports indicated that many areas “achieved their zero casualty goals.” Recent news reports said that at least 10 people have been reported killed due to the typhoon.
“We ask the public to continue monitoring media and online resources to keep updated on the weather and advisories concerning cleanup and restoring services,” said Lacierda.
“As we begin the work of restoring services and repairing the damage caused by typhoon Glenda, let us take stock of the manner in which the public, typhoons he local and national government agencies worked together to ensure preparations were in place, and information disseminated effectively and in a timely manner, during the approach and progress of the storm,” he added.
Before the onslaught of typhoon Glenda, President Aquino on Tuesday met concerned government officials at the NDRRMC office in Camp Aguinaldo ordering them to “minimize the casualties and the hardship of our people.”
He ensured that all agencies are on full alert and ready to respond to the needs of the people as the typhoon hits Metro Manila, central and southern Luzon, and the Bicol Region.
Some parts of Metro Manila and its nearby provinces are currently experiencing power interruption. The Manila Electric Co. (Meralco) earlier said that about 90 percent of its franchise area have no electricity as the typhoon downed the transmission lines of the Luzon grid.
Typhoon Glenda is expected to exit the Philippine Area of Responsibility by Thursday (July 17). (MNS)