In partnership with Secretary Rex Gatchalian of the Department of Social Welfare and Development, Speaker Ferdinand Martin Romualdez and wife Tingog party-list Rep. Yedda Marie Romualdez have distributed cash aid to at least 1,653 families who fell victim to the series of tremors that rocked the province of Davao de Oro in the past week.
“Natural calamities, such as earthquakes, are unforeseen, and the injuries and damage they cause are of no fault of the victims. So, it is only just to allocate and direct the government’s ayuda program to victims of the Davao de Oro earthquakes,” the Speaker said.
A magnitude 6 earthquake struck Mindanao on March 22, followed by strong aftershocks that caused a considerable amount of damage to property of the people.
The couple helped facilitate the release of cash aid to the victims, most of whom were displaced by the earthquake, under DSWD’s Assistance to Individuals in Crisis Situations program.
“We know that the amount of assistance does not really cover the damage done by the recent calamity. But we hope it alleviates a little our citizens’ plight in this time of need. The government is doing everything in its power to restore normalcy to Davao de Oro,” the party-list lawmaker said.
DSWD, along with representatives from the Speaker office and local government officials, conducted AICS payouts to the municipalities of Compostela, New Bataan and Maragusan.
In Compostela, 319 beneficiaries received cash aid of P3,000 each.
Deputy Secretary General Sofonias Gabonada represented the Romualdez couple in the financial aid distribution and was accompanied by Davao de Oro Rep. Maricar Zamora.
The Speaker’s message was delivered by Gabonada who said that when the Speaker’s province of Leyte fell victim to a strong typhoon in 2013, Davao de Oro was one of the provinces to send aid.
It was just proper that Leyte also responds to the call for help in the Mindanaoan province, he said.
In New Bataan, a P5,000 cash assistance was given to each of the 503 beneficiaries, all from Barangayn Andap which was heavily affected by the quake.
Also present during the payout was Mayor Gerald Balbin, Vice Mayor Larry Pagalan and the city councilors of New Bataan.
Pagalan thanked Romualdez, the Tingog party-list and DSWD for their assistance extended to them.
The tribal leaders of Mandaya and Mansaka also gave a token of appreciation to the Romualdez couple for helping the indigenous people community.
The team of Speaker and Tingog also facilitated the swift distribution of AICS amounting to P3,000 to 285 beneficiaries from the remote and no-network signal BarangaynTandik of Maragusan, Davao de Oro.
In Barangay Paloc, Maragusan, Davao de Oro, an additional 465 families whose houses were partially damged benefitted from P3,000 financial aid and additional 81 families received P5,000 each after their houses were totally damaged.
In his message, Vice Mayor Cesar Colina Sr. thanked the Speaker and his wife as well as the DSWD for the assistance.