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North Cotabato under state of calamity due to El Niño

John Unson (The Philippine Star) - January 20, 2016 - 9:00am

NORTH COTABATO, Philippines – The provincial board here has declared a state of calamity to hasten the release of funds to mitigate the effects of the dry spell.

The Sangguniang Panlalawigan approved the recommendation of provincial officials to declare a state of calamity on Tuesday, citing losses incurred by farmers, whose crops had been destroyed due to lack of rain.

Records from the office of North Cotabato Gov. Emmylou Talino-Mendoza and provincial agriculturist Eliseo Mangliwan showed that close to 28,000 hectares of rice have been damaged by the drought since November.

Mangliwan said damage to crops due to El Niño was placed at P238 million. He said rats also recently infested several parcels of land.

A local radio report on Monday said the provincial government needs an initial P4-million budget for cloud-seeding operations.

Cynthia Ortega, provincial disaster risk reduction and management officer, said they would conduct cloud-seeding operations over the watershed of Alamada town, the Arakan Valley complex and Mt. Apo.

Last week, the Zamboanga city government also declared a state of calamity due to the dry spell.

The local water utility imposed rationing for 12 hours because of the low water level. The city agriculture office also reported that damage to agriculture had breached P10 million.

ALAMADA ARAKAN VALLEY ATILDE CYNTHIA ORTEGA EL NI ELISEO MANGLIWAN EMMYLOU TALINO-MENDOZA MANGLIWAN MT. APO NORTH COTABATO GOV SANGGUNIANG PANLALAWIGAN
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