The United Kingdom, China, Canada, and the European Union (EU) have expressed their readiness to assist the country following the devastation left by Typhoon Odette in several provinces in the Visayas and Mindanao.
UK Ambassador to the Philippines Laure Beaufils said Friday night their embassy is closely monitoring the situation and “stands ready to assist.”
“The United Kingdom stands in solidarity with all those affected by Typhoon Odette in the Philippines and we extend our deepest condolences in particular to those who have lost loved ones,” she said.
Chinese Ambassador Huang Xilian said Beijing is also willing to offer assistance to help the affected families stay afloat “in the spirit of Bayanihan.”
“Saddened to learn that Typhoon Odette has devastated and caused severe damages to families in the Visayas and Mindanao regions. We stand in solidarity with all affected Filipino families in facing this challenge,” he said.
Canadian Ambassador Peter MacArthur said his embassy is in contact with its Philippine partners.
“Canada stands with those affected by Typhoon Odette. We are in contact with our Philippines partners and are ready to assist. Conveying our sympathies to those injured and who may have lost family members, homes, and livelihoods,” he said in a tweet.
The EU Delegation in Manila, meanwhile, extended its condolences to the families of the deceased.
“The EU stands in solidarity with the government and Filipinos affected by ‘Odette’, especially the Visayas and Mindanao. Our thoughts are with the families of the deceased,” it said.
“EU ECHO (European Civil Protection and Humanitarian Aid Operations) is monitoring the situation. As in the past, we stand ready to assist,” it added.
The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reported that “Odette” has decelerated while moving west-northwestward towards the Kalayaan Islands as of 2 a.m. on December 18.
Severe damage across the Visayas region and several provinces in Mindanao have been reported following the typhoon’s onslaught.
Japanese Ambassador Kazuhiko Koshikawa, meanwhile, lauded the “brave first responders” of the ongoing disaster relief and recovery operations in the area.
The Irish Embassy in Manila also sent its thoughts to the affected families.
“The Embassy of Ireland has been shocked by the level of devastation to date caused by Typhoon Odette. Our thoughts and prayers are with all the families of those who tragically lost their lives, and with all the people affected by this disaster,” it said.
Australian Ambassador Steven Robinson likewise extended his condolences to those impacted by “Odette”.
“In partnership with the Philippine Red Cross, we have released pre-positioned emergency supplies, and are continuing to work with the Philippines on further options to help,” he said Saturday.
Some presidential aspirants responded to the needs of those whose lives were upended by typhoon Odette.
Sen. Manny Pacquiao sent an initial batch of relief goods to Cebu province and Bohol, including 2 metric tons of “assorted relief items” or some 2,400 kilograms of “complete food packs,” which will be given to Gov. Gwen Garcia.
This also included some 479 food packs, as well as more than 300 kg of bottled water from Vice-President Leni Robredo’s office.
Manila Mayor Isko Moreno Domagoso, meanwhile, signed a resolution to allot at least P2.5 million for affected residents in Cebu and other places in Visayas and Mindanao.
Meanwhile, Senator Panfilo “Ping” Lacson offered a short silence for the victims of Typhoon Odette during his visit to the Philippine Military Academy (PMA) as one of the key guests for the homecoming of PMA Matatag Class of 1971 on Saturday.
He said politics should be set aside as many Filipinos reel from the impact of Odette.
Meanwhile, the Department of Social Welfare and Development said Saturday it has more than P900 million worth of available stockpiles and standby funds to aid those affected by the onslaught of Typhoon Odette.
In an interview on Dobol B TV, DSWD spokesperson Irene Dumlao said the agency has prepositioned family food packs and other non-food items prior to Odette’s arrival.
“These are readily available for distribution as part of our resource augmentation mandate to local government units,” Dumlao said.
“Our prepositioned goods as well as standby funds are worth over P900 million. Those are the resources in the National Resource Operations Center-Central Office and regional field offices,” she added.
The DSWD official said more than P1.5 million worth of assistance have been distributed by the local government units. The department’s augmentation is readily available for LGUs needing additional resources, she said.