Army Helps Flood Victims in Metro Manila
FORT BONIFACIO, Taguig City – The Philippine Army joins other government agencies, non-government organizations, private individuals and entities in helping the victims of the massive flooding in Metro Manila.
Last Tuesday, almost all cities and towns in Metro Manila were submerged in floodwater as strong rains poured due to the southwest monsoon.
Major Harold M Cabunoc, the Army Spokesperson, said that the Philippine Army immediately mobilized its troops to help in the rescue and relief efforts.
“Our troops from the 525th Engineering Brigade were deployed in Quezon City and Marikina City to help in rescuing the residents trapped in their houses as floodwater continues to rise,” said Cabunoc.
The Army deployed around 45 personnel, three M35 trucks, and two rubber boats in the midst of the heavy flooding yesterday, August 7.
They were able to rescue more than 300 families in Araneta Avenue, Quezon City.
They likewise assisted ABS-CBN’s Sagip Kapamilya and GMA Kapuso Foundation in distributing relief items to about 500 families in the area.
At about 5 pm, a platoon of soldiers from the Army’s Civil Military Operations Group (CMOG) also conducted relief operations in the affected areas within Metro Manila.
On board two M35 trucks, the troops together with the Ateneo volunteers led by Fr Orlando Noriela and Bro Joel Liwanag, distributed cooked meals in the evacuation centers in Brgy. Sto Niño, Payatas and Brgy. Sta. Monica, Novaliches, Quezon City.
Army reservists cross dangers to save lives
For the past three days, the Army’s Search and Rescue Unit (SARU) has been conducting rescue operations in Quezon City, Marikina City and Las Piñas City.
Captain Rommel H Marquez, the Commanding Officer of the SARU, said that they employed about 50 personnel in their search and rescue efforts.
“The 50 were divided into three teams and deployed in three different locations wherein we conducted water search and rescue using two inflatable rescue boats and two kayaks. The kayaks allowed us to penetrate the congested areas,” said Marquez.
The teams were able to save more than 100 families from Barangays Tatalon, Roxas, Talayan, Muñoz, and del Monte in Quezon City, and in Marikina City.
“Our troops braved the 20 feet-deep floodwater to rescue the residents who were trapped without food items in the second floor and the roofs of their houses,” narrated Marquez.
“We prioritized the infants, children, elderly, those with ailments and the pregnant women. We were also able to evacuate 10 mentally-challenged patients from a certain rehabilitation center in Quezon City,” he added.
Army calls for “Bayanihan”
The Philippine Army also calls on the public to help the flood victims by donating used clothing, food, bottled water, mattresses and pillows.
The Civil Military Operations Group set up at the Philippine Army Wellness Center (Army Gym) to receive donations from various groups and individuals.
“We urge our fellow Filipinos to lend a helping hand for the victims of the recent calamity. The Army welcomes any donations from both the public and private institutions. We will be coordinating with the Department of Social Welfare and Development and the local government units for the distribution of the relief goods that we will be able to collect,” said Cabunoc.
“This Bayanihan concept is embodied in the new campaign plan of the AFP, in which partnership with the different stakeholders is being encouraged. Responding to calamities can be effectively carried out if the different government agencies, NGOS, local communities, and private individuals and entities will work collectively,” concluded Cabunoc.