Duterte committed to bringing normalcy to quake-torn areas

MANILA-- MalacaAang on Tuesday assured that President Rodrigo Duterte is committed to bringing areas affected by the magnitude 6.5 earthquake that hit parts of Leyte last Thursday to normalcy as soon as possible.

"In the same way that the President has made a commitment, for example for Marawi, it's the same also his intention for disaster-stricken areas like Ormoc. And that is, of course, the restoration as soon as possible of goods and services so that the normalcy can be restored," Presidential Spokesperson Ernesto Abella said at a Palace briefing.

He said that the visit of members of Duterte's Cabinet in Ormoc showed the President's commitment to the Filipino people.

"This is part of the President's commitment that all Filipinos should be able to experience a comfortable life for all. It was an excellent representation yesterday considering the fact that a full complement of secretaries were there representing and there was a face-to-face meet with the local government units, and there was a healthy dialogue regarding that," Abella said.

The Palace official said that among the priorities are restoring power and addressing the need for potable water in the disaster-stricken areas.

He said that the Department of Energy (DOE) has vowed to restore energy in affected areas within 10 days while the water situation is being addressed by other government agencies.

"Secretary (Alfonso) Cusi was still holding on to his commitment that within 10 days the energy should be restored and that it will be up and moving within the next few days," Abella said.

For water, he said the initial quick response is to send a Navy boat with about 10,000 gallons of potable water.

Meanwhile, portable water filtration units are also part of the whole package of short-term relief services that the government will provide in the quake-affected areas while medium and long-term programs are being considered.

Abella said that all these would be coming out in the full report that will be submitted soon.

Source: Philippine News Agency