The online news portal of TV5
MANILA, Philippines -- The United States on Tuesday said it is providing US$ 100,000, or about P4.3 million, to the Philippines to support disaster relief efforts in Metro Manila following severe flooding caused by the southwest monsoon this week.
U.S. Ambassador Harry Thomas, Jr. issued a disaster declaration after reports of widespread flooding in the National Capital Region, and offered to provide immediate relief assistance.
“On behalf of the U.S. government and the American people, I extend my heartfelt sympathies to those who are displaced and who have lost homes and livelihoods due to the floods,” Thomas said in a statement.
Most parts of Metro Manila and nearby provinces in Luzon have been submerged in flood waters, forcing the cancellation of classes and work.
According to Philippine Atmospheric Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), there was is no tropical cyclone prevailing in the country but said the heavy downpour was due to the southwest monsoon being pushed by typhoon "Haikui" in Japan.
PAGASA has issued a red warning signal for Metro Manila on Tuesday, warning residents in low-lying areas to evacuate.
A red warning means more than 30 millimeters of rains are expected and serious flooding may occur.
Classes and work were suspended in Metro Manila as well as in the provinces of Laguna, Cavite, Rizal, Bulacan, Pampanga, Bataan, Zambales, Pangasinan, and Tarlac. Several schools have also suspended classes and work for Wednesday.
Thomas said the US government, through the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), would conduct an initial damage assessment in Metro Manila and surrounding provinces. “As a good friend and longstanding development partner, the United States will work with the Philippine government to determine where our assistance is most needed. We remain committed to helping the Philippine people overcome this difficult time.” Thomas said.
The US has been a key partner of the Philippines in providing immediate humanitarian response during natural calamities.