Donors urged to coordinate with government after donated food downs dozens
The DSWD of Region 11 has released a total of 1,355 family food packs and 330 sleeping kits to the families affected by the magnitude 6.3 earthquake in the municipalities of Magsaysay and Bansalan in Davao del Sur.

Donors urged to coordinate with government after donated food downs dozens

Rosette Adel (Philstar.com) - November 5, 2019 - 2:14pm

MANILA, Philippines— At least 29 quake-affected residents of Makilala, North Cotabato were downed by food poisoning from a donation on Monday.

This was confirmed by Ricardo Jalad, National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council executive director, in a press briefing on Tuesday.

Jalad said the donors provided food to quake victims along the highways of Makilala, North Cotabato and not through the government, unfortunately resulting in food poisoning. He said they did not know who the donors are but the food was from west Kidapawan.

“’Di natin alam kung saan talaga. ‘Di na-trace kung sino nagbigay and that resulted to food poisoning. ‘Di naman siguro sinasadya nung nagbigay,” Jalad said.

(We don’t know from where exactly. We did not trace the donors and that resulted to food poisoning. That’s probably not their intention.)

According to Jalad, the victims were brought to hospitals for treatment when they started vomiting.

Of the 29 reported food poisoning victims, nine patients were admitted to Kidapawan City Hospital and ten were admitted to the provincial hospital.

Meanwhile, ten others were outpatients of the Rural Health Unit of Makilala.

'No to highway help'

In view of this incident, the NDRRMC are encouraging volunteers and private donors to inform the staff at the central coordinating center and Incident Command Post of their donations and planned aid so it would be properly sorted and delivered.

“So ine-encourage natin na doon sa evacuation centers so there will be checking of the quality of food and the quality of medicine kung medicine binibigay,” Jalad said.

He said the move is also to discourage the victims from seeking help along highways and settle on evacuation centers.

Jalad said proper management of donations would "ensure that there will be no underserving and overserving."

The NDRRMC asked the donors to not give goods that are about to expire.

He added that such goods shall be prioritized in the distribution to prevent another food poisoning incident.

Jalad said it is the local government units that directly manage the evacuation sites and relief items with the assistance of the Department of Social and Welfare Development on food and non-food items, while the Department of Health handles the water sanitation and medicine.

Meanwhile, logistics are taken cared of by Office of the Civil Defense and the assistance of Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Philippine National Police.

On Monday, the DSWD assured the residents of villages of North Cotabato that aid is coming to their areas.

READ: DSWD: Help on the way for ‘hard-to-reach’ North Cotabato villages

The DSWD identified Makilala as one of the hard-to-reach areas  areas because of earthquake-induced landslides in some villages.

North Cotabato was the epicenter of the three powerful quakes that hit the region in the past two weeks. —Rosette Adel

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