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MANILA, Philippines - Despite flooding in various parts of Quezon City such as Araneta Avenue, Commonwealth, and Barangay Del Monte, Mayor Herbert Bautista said there is no need for QC to be declared under state of calamity.
"Hindi kailangang ideklara yung state of calamity as far as the situation is concerned. Wala pang bagyo to, paano kung biglang bumagyo? Tapos nadeclare na namin in state of calamity. We feel that Quezon City is resilient enough. Kayang-kaya ng QC, not only the government but its people to withstand these particular pressures (There's no need to declare a state of calamity as far as the situation is concerned. There's no typhoon yet, what more if a typhoon came? Then we already declared a state of calamity. QC, not only the government but also its people, can withstand these particular pressures),” he said.
In an interview with TV5's Good Morning Club Thursday morning, the mayor said that only a small portion of Quezon City’s almost three million population is affected by the floods.
He said only about 15,000 were affected by the floods.
“It's only a very small portion of Quezon City. When it comes to total size, only Araneta Avenue is usually seen,” he said in Filipino.
Situation at evacuation centers
According to Bautista, 53 evacuation centers are being occupied all over Quezon City.
He said evacuation centers usually have the capacity to shelter 3,000, and only two evacuation centers have reached their full capacity: Bagong Silangan and in Gulod, Novaliches.
Bautista also said there’s no shortage in relief goods in the evacuation centers.
“There's no problem in QC. In fact, a lot of private sectors are helping us. Though there are times we can hear some people complain ‘we don't have food yet,’ it's not really about the food, it's really more of the delay in cooking because we've established about 6 to 7 soup kitchens already,” he said in Filipino.
Long-term plans for QC
To address the problem of perennial flooding on Araneta Avenue, Bautista said there are long-term plans for the area by the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) and the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH).
The World Bank study commissioned by MMDA and DPWH Secretary Singson will come out either this month or next month, he said.
“That is the long-term plan. The study is about how to eradicate flood incidents in Metro Manila. And Araneta Avenue is part of the study,” he said.
For those who want to help the affected families, Bautista advised that they look for the QC Social Services Department headed by Mrs. Theresa Mariano for the donation of relief goods, and for the QC Chief ng Department of Public Order and Safety Dr. Elmo San Diego for participation in rescue operations.