ZamPen gov’t agencies urged to brace for La Niña

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By Franklin P. Gumapon (FPG/PIA9)

PAGADIAN CITY (PIA) – As the dry spell wrought by El Niño phenomenon is decaying away, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG)-9 is urging all government agencies in Zamboanga Peninsula (ZamPen) to prepare for La Niña which may bring heavy rains.

In a disaster preparedness meeting held here yesterday, July 13, DILG-9 Regional Director Paisal O. Abutazil has called on all agencies particularly the local government units (LGUs) to always prepare for any disaster, be it natural or human induced.

“Disaster preparedness is a very important concern. Let us collectively agree among ourselves as to the approaches and strategies to mitigate the impact of any disaster,” Abutazil said.

The meeting also tackled the National Disaster Preparedness Plan (NDPP) for 2015-2028, Operation Listo, Gabay at Mapa para sa Listong Pamilya, Regional Disaster Preparedness Plan, La Niña updates and presentation of preparedness reports by provincial/city disaster risk reduction management offices.

Moreover, Ms. Maribel Enriquez, chief meteorologist of PAG-ASA-9, reported that “Asia is home to 80 percent of natural disasters and the Philippines is second in terms of vulnerability to natural hazards.”

PAG-ASA forecasts that eight to 14 tropical cyclones may develop/enter the country starting June to December this year.

Some 36 representatives from the DILG, Philippine National Police (PNP), Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP), Philippine Army (PA), Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Philippine Red Cross (PRC), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), Philippine Coast Guard (PCG), Philippine Information Agency (PIA), and provincial/city disaster risk reduction management offices attended the said meeting.