, OCTOBER 1, 2011 (OFFICIAL GAZETTE OF PRESIDENT AQUINO 3rd) Statement of His Excellency Benigno S. Aquino III, President of the Philippines On the effects of typhoon Pedring and preparedness for typhoon Quiel

[Released on September 30, 2011]

Two years after the unforgettable impact of tropical storm Ondoy on the Filipino nation, our resiliency as a people is once again being tested by nature. With the onslaught of typhoon Pedring and the anticipated effects of typhoon Quiel over the weekend, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council has been taking all necessary precautions from early warning, pre-emptive evacuation, to ongoing relief and recovery operations.

Through the directive of NDRRMC Chair, DND Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, the AFP Disaster Response Task Force has deployed additional search and rescue units from the Army, Navy, and Air Force, including six helicopters in flooded areas in Central Luzon. Likewise, Chairman Francis Tolentino of MMDA has dispatched a 14-man team with equipment in Bulacan.

All relevant agencies of government are performing their respective mandates effectively. Notable among them are DOST-PAGASA for accurate and timely issuance of forecasts, the DSWD and DOH for prepositioning relief goods and medical supplies respectively, the DILG and its bureaus for overseeing the preparedness of local governments, DepEd for early suspension of classes and making schools available as evacuation centers, DPWH for quick restoration of mobility corridors as well as the DOE, NEA, NGCP, and electric cooperatives for power restoration in affected areas. Local government units have also been performing their duties.

Relief and recovery from TY Pedring will be a priority and a continuing effort even as we brace our respective communities from potentially more damaging onslaught of TY Quiel. I therefore ask our fellow citizens to heed our national and local authorities so that we can all achieve our common goal in disaster risk reduction. Let me emphasize: we need to move all those in danger. In particular, let us help each other persuade fisherfolks and residents of coastal, low-lying and mountainous areas to be on alert and be extra cautious. Let us keep the spirit of bayanihan alive by showing our concern to the more vulnerable sectors.

It is also comforting to note that civil society organizations continue to share the burden of helping our country and people cope with one disaster after another. We also thank the international community for the assistance it has offered to our government.

Chief News Editor: Sol Jose Vanzi

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