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Nation

Power in Odette-hit areas back in 45 days

Paolo Romero - The Philippine Star

BACOLOD CITY , Philippines — It may take 45 days for power to be fully restored in areas in Negros Occidental that were devastated by Super Typhoon Odette, Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson said yesterday.

Power cooperatives in Iloilo as well as in the northern and central part of Negros Occidental dispatched their personnel to the southern part of the province to help raise around 200 electrical posts that were felled by strong winds.

Although some areas in the northern and central portions of the province suffered devastation from the typhoon, it was the southern portion that was hardest hit by Odette.

Authorities said Odette destroyed almost P6 billion worth of property including crops, livestock and infrastructure in Negros Occidental alone.

Aside from the the lack of electricity, residents need more food and potable water.

The city governments of San Carlos and Cadiz allocated P2.5 million and P1.2 million, respectively, in assistance for typhoon-affected communities in southern Negros.

San Carlos and Cadiz, both located in the northern part of Negros Occidental, incurred damage from the typhoon, but not as heavy as the devastated areas in the south.

The National Housing Authority is set to distribute financial assistance amounting to P5,000 each to owners of damaged houses.

The provincial government will release P50 million for the purchase of construction materials for damaged houses, Lacson said.

Meanwhile, local government units have been urged to immediately take steps to adapt to increasingly destructive weather disturbances that hit the country yearly.

Sen. Richard Gordon, chairman of the Philippine Red Cross, said authorities must accept the fact that storms are becoming more powerful due to climate change.

“Climate change has changed the whole nine yards. We have more storm surges, poweful winds and more rain. Adjustments must be made,” Gordon said, noting that the country is visited by an average of 20 typhoons every year.

EUGENIO JOSE LACSON
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