Press Releases

Salceda on Mayon evacuation: “This could be protacted;” House tax chair says “sustained govt support” for weeks or months crucial to keeping Albay residents safe

June 13th, 2023

House Ways and Means Chair Joey Sarte Salceda (Albay, 2nd district) is asking for “patience and stamina” from national government agencies extending pre-disaster relief and evacuation support to those affected by recent Mayon Volcano activity, as “evacuation efforts and the wait for an actual eruption could take weeks or months.”

“Historically, the scenarios are 45, 90, or 110 days. It could, of course, get even longer than that. This will be a waiting game. Until an explosive eruption happens, or the alert level goes down, we can’t really do much other than evacuate and wait.”

“So, this will really require stamina and patience. I am sure President Marcos and the national government will have the patience to see this through. But the economic disruption will also be significant,” Salceda added.

Some 5,000 farmers are already affected by ongoing evacuation efforts and volcanic activity.

“So, apart from evacuation and relief support, we will need support with economic displacement. Cash-for-work will be crucial, because we will also need manpower to clean and maintain evacuation centers,” Salceda explained.

“I have already requested for DOLE-TUPAD support from Speaker Romualdez, who has assured us that he will do whatever he can to provide what Albay needs to endure this situation. He has already given us very significant assistance. We are very thankful”

As of June 13, 8 AM, some 4286 families or 15,241 individuals are staying in Daraga, Camalig, Guinobatan, Santo Domingo, Malilipot, Bacacay towns and Ligao and Tabaco cities.

Salceda estimates that at least 9,829 families and at least 37,100 individuals will eventually have to be evacuated under the current alert levels.

“Secretary Gatchalian was the very first head of agency to assure us that they can manage a protracted situation. And we are very thankful. We welcome President Marcos’s visit because this situation will require more than just food relief.”

“This will also require economic displacement support from DOLE, medical, hygiene, and psychosocial support from DOH, police presence, emergency and water provision from DILG, among others.”

“We are working with the corporate sector now, to fill in whatever gaps can be filled. But, with PBBM directing the national effort, we are optimistic that Albay will get what we need.”

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