Roque defends late 'Rolly' briefing: It was a Sunday


MANILA, Philippines (Updated 3:32 p.m.) — President Rodrigo Duterte was not in the high-level briefing of government agencies on Super Typhoon Rolly because it was a Sunday, presidential spokesperson Harry Roque said.

Roque led the briefing of Cabinet secretaries on Sunday morning at the office of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council, after Rolly made its first landfall in Bato, Catanduanes at around 4:50 a.m. Duterte, who is in Davao, was not present and did not participate in the briefing, even through videoconferencing.

Asked why the briefing was only conducted on Sunday or days after Rolly entered Philippine Area of Responsibility, Roque said Monday: “Well dahil inaasahan po nga natin yung landfall kahapon at saka sa totoo lang po araw ng Linggo naman po iyon.”

(Well, because we are expecting the landfall yesterday, and honestly, it was a Sunday.)

He said that even if it was a Sunday, Cabinet officials attended the briefing to give updates on government preparations for Rolly, the strongest typhoon in the world in 2020 that hit the country.

Then a severe tropical storm, Rolly entered the Philippine Area of Responsiblity on Thursday night. A day later, at Philippine time, the United States military weather bureau reported that Rolly will likely intensify into a super typhoon as it barrels towards landmass.

“So ang tanong bakit lang kahapon? Kasi kahapon lang pumasok yung bagyo no, at bago po 'yan patuloy naman po ang briefing na ginagawa ng NDRRMC,” Roque also said, adding that he has been monitoring these briefings.

(So the question, why only yesterday? Because the storm only entered yesterday, and before that, the NDRRMC has been conducting continued briefings.)

Duterte to fly back to Manila

In a separate update, Roque said Duterte will be flying to Manila from Davao on Monday. The president will meet with officials in the afternoon, the STAR also reported.

“En route to Manila, he will be conducting an aerial inspection in Bicolandia and Calabarzon,” Roque said, which are regions that will be flown over in usual air travels to Manila from Davao.

Roque said Sunday that the president ordered the meeting with Cabinet officials and the NDRRMC. He added that Duterteerte has been monitoring and giving instructions amid the onslaught of Rolly.

State weather bureau PAGASA on Monday noon lifted all storm signals over the country as Rolly moves away from the Philippines. 

Weather forecasters however are also monitoring Tropical Storm Siony (international name: Atsani), the 19th tropical cyclone to enter or develop within PAR this year. — Kristine Joy Patag




As It Happens
LATEST UPDATE: November 18, 2020 - 4:45pm

Follow this thread for updates on tropical cyclone Rolly (international name: Goni).

November 18, 2020 - 4:45pm

Australia provides an additional P28.52 million to support Filipino communities affected by tropical cyclone Rolly in the Bicol Region.

This will help the government provide food, repair damaged homes and support emergency medical teams in the region. Australia's latest commitment will directly assist 23,345 people, including 2,990 women and girls.

"This support is even more critical following Typhoon Ulysses that caused further hardship for the people in the Bicol Region. Australia stands with the Philippines in this time of need," Australian Ambassador Steven Robinson says.

November 9, 2020 - 5:49pm

President Rodrigo Duterte may place the regions of CALABARZON, MIMAROPA, and Bicol under state of calamity because of the impact of typhoon "Rolly," Malacañang says.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council has approved a recommendation to place the three Luzon regions under state of calamity to fast-track the recovery of the typhoon-ravaged areas.

"Most likely, but let us wait for the document that will come from the Office of the President," presidential spokesman Harry Roque said at a press briefing when asked if Duterte would adopt the recommendation of the council. — Alexis Romero

November 2, 2020 - 7:26pm

The provincial board has placed Camarines Sur under state of calamity following the onslaught of Typhoon Rolly.

In a resolution released Monday, the local government cited strong winds and torrential rains, as well as the extensive flooding and other damages brought about by the typhoon.

November 2, 2020 - 5:25pm

At 3 p.m., Tropical Storm Rolly was located 225 kilometers west of Iba, Zambales.

The cyclone bears maximum sustained winds of 65 kph and gusts of up to 80 kph. It is moving north northwestward at 15 kph.

November 2, 2020 - 3:00pm

Vice President Leni Robredo posts photos of the first signs of devastation brought about by Typhoon Rolly in Camarines Sur.

Robredo says she left Manila before dawn on Monday to visit the typhoon-hit province.

The vice president will also be visiting Albay and Catanduanes.

Left Manila before dawn today. Just arrived CamSur and these were the first signs of devastation we saw. Will be going around Albay and Catanduanes, as well.

Posted by Leni Gerona Robredo on Sunday, 1 November 2020
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