Cebu City to grant financial, burial aid to drowning, landslide victims

By Morexette Marie B. Erram |September 30,2017 - 11:50 PM


Financial assistance worth P20,000, and burial assistance worth at least P10,000 will be given to the living relatives of the three persons who drowned in a creek in Sitio Riverside, Barangay Guadalupe, and to the 11-year-old boy who died in a landslide at Barangay San Jose, Cebu City, last Friday.

In a phone interview with Cebu Daily News on Saturday, Cebu City Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) chief Nagiel Bañacia revealed that the city government is expected to hand out financial assistance and burial assistance to the families of the victims who died in the disasters that were brought about by the heavy rains in the past few days.

“There will be burial assistance (worth at least P10,000) and P20,000 cash as financial assistance to the families of each victim,” Bañacia said.

Last Friday, four lives were claimed by two separate tragedies that struck in Cebu City as a result of a heavy downpour.

Curiosity over a python swimming in the rising water of a creek in Sitio Riverside, Barangay Guadalupe, led two minors and one adult to drown after the overcrowded footbridge they were standing on collapsed.

Hours later, a landslide occurred in Purok 3, Barangay San Jose, an upland village of Cebu City. It claimed the life of an 11-year-old boy whose house was partially buried by the earth that fell upon it.

On the other hand, Bañacia said that they have coordinated with the Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor (DWUP) to strengthen their department’s efforts to clear waterways in Cebu City from obstruction, such as the shanties occupied by informal settlers.

He added that a team from DWUP was deployed yesterday to conduct a survey among the residents in Sitio Riverside, Barangay Guadalupe, to determine the number of people who needed to be relocated, and to obtain other information needed to implement the relocation process.

“We will have to relocate them. There was a team from DWUP deployed there and will conduct profiling survey on them. This profiling survey (is important) because we have to obtain other information needed to process their relocation because relocating is not easy as telling them just to relocate. There are other factors we have to consider,” said Bañacia.

The CDRRMO chief also confirmed reports that several of the residents in Sitio Riverside had been relocated to Barangay Binaliw by the Presidential Commission on the Urban Poor (PCUP) in 2012, and that they were given compensation for their relocation, but later returned to Riverside.

“They were already relocated by the PCUP. And some of them were already compensated, but there are still some who chose to return there. First of all, they are not allowed to live in creeks. That’s why we coordinated with the DWUP for their relocation,” Bañacia stated.

He said DWUP’s survey was expected to be finished anytime soon.

“For now, we’re looking for a suitable relocation site for the residents,” added Bañacia.

Meanwhile, the CDRRMO urged residents to be vigilant and keep watch of any events within their vicinity that may possibly lead to disasters such as landslides.

“We would like to remind our constituents to keep watch of any signs that will lead to any disasters. If you notice, for example, soil eroding within your house, do not wait for your home to be buried by landslide. Act on it while the weather is fine,” Bañacia said.

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