Pardo families salvage among ruins as food aid comes through

By Apple Ta-as, Chito O. Aragon, Nestle L. Semilla, Norman V. Mendoza |March 19,2015 - 12:05 AM

Nine-year-old Kyle Donal’s face was smeared in ash as he played outside what used to be his family’s home in barangay Basak Pardo yesterday.

“Ang akong mga tawo-tawo nga sundalo nga duwaan kay naapil sa sunog, hinatag ra gani to sa ako (My toy soldiers were destroyed in the fire, it was given to me),” he said looking away until his gaze landed on his mother Lea.

Kyle’s 44-year-old mother Lea said they only managed to save the family TV because she had to attend to her son, who fainted.

She said Kyle suffers from a heart ailment and they had to spend P500 a week for his medicines.

The Donal family was one of the 304 families that lost their homes in last Tuesday’s fire.

Reblocking

The Cebu City Council declared sitios Ulap, Laguna and Bamboo in Basak Pardo under calamity status following the incident.

Ester Concha, head of the Department of Social Welfare and Services, said the fire destroyed more than 200 houses.

She said they gave food packs to the 304 families since last Tuesday and will continue doing so for two more days.

Cash assistance of P10,000 for homeowners and P5,000 for renters will be given tomorrow while construction materials will be given once the city government finishes reblocking the areas, Concha said.

Acting Mayor Edgardo Labella said the City Engineering Office already started work on re-blocking the site.

Witnesses

He said the families won’t have to be relocated since the lot owner, the Rallon family, offered the property for sale to the city last March 6 before the fire happened.

Colin Rosell, head of the Department of Welfare of Urban Poor (DWUP), said his office is negotiating with Japper Management Development Real Estate Corp. which manages the property on behalf of the families.

Cebu City Fire Marshal Rogelio Bongabong said they will invite more witnesses in their investigation on the cause of the fire. Based on the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) list at least 90 houses were destroyed and 20 houses damaged.

Last February 18 a fire hit sitio Kawayan in barangay Poblacion Pardo that displaced 626 persons.

Donations

In Mandaue City, the City Social Welfare Services listed 67 families that were displaced by the fire that hit two zones in barangay Paknaan, Mandaue City at 3 p.m. last Tuesday.

CSWS chief Violy Cavada said some families were given tents near their homes while the others stayed with their relatives. “Food will be provided for three days,” she said.

She said 40 houses were destroyed while 12 were damaged.

Cavada said the barangay health center is monitoring the families for any illnesses especially the children.

Paknaan barangay chairman Malaquias Soco said the barangay council already declared the areas under calamity status.

Homeowners will receive P10,000 cash assistance while renters will receive P5,000.

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