Duterte wants to visit earthquake-stricken Masbate

Published August 18, 2020, 5:16 PM

by Genalyn Kabiling

President Duterte will certainly want to visit the communities affected by the earthquake in Masbate but such travel will still depend on his security team, Malacañang said Tuesday.

President Rodrigo Roa Duterte

Presidential spokesman Harry Roque discussed the possible visit of the President after assuring the quake-hit communities of the government’s relief assistance.

“Siguradong-sigurado po ako na gusto ni Presidente pumunta at siguro po makikipag-away pa ‘yan sa PSG (Presidential Security Group) kung talagang siya’y pipigilan (I am sure the President wants to go and will probably argue with the PSG if they will prevent him),” Roque said during a televised press briefing.

“Instinctively, ang Presidente gusto na lumipad papuntang Masbate pero whether or not he will be allowed, titignan po natin (Instinctively, the President wants to fly to Masbate but whether or not he will be allowed, let’s see),” he added.

An earthquake with a magnitude 6.6 hit Masbate Tuesday morning, leaving one person dead and several others injured.

Roque said the communities affected by the quake have nothing to worry, saying food, blankets and other government aid have already been pre-positioned.

“Dahil nga sa dami ng bagyo at lindol at pagputok ng bulkan na nangyayari sa atin, laging handa na tayo. At dahil laging handa tayo, tingin ko naman napa-preposition na nga gaya ng sinabi ko yung mga humanitarian assistance. Dadagdagan pa po natin ‘yan (Because of enduring many typhoons, earthquakes and volcanic eruptions, we have always been prepared. And because we have always been prepared, I think humanitarian assistance has already been prepositioned),” he said.

“Pagdating sa ayuda, huwag po kayo mag-alala. ‘Yung mga pagkain, mga blankets, mga resettlement areas, lahat po ‘yan ay naka-preposition na po ‘yan at sanay na sanay na po tayo magbigay ng ganiyang tulong sa ating mga kababayan (When it comes to relief aid, don’t worry. Food, blankets, resettlements areas, all of those area already prepositioned. We are used to giving help to our citizens),” he said.

Roque also cited the resilience of Filipinos in times of calamities and other emergencies. He said Filipinos often come together to help each other get back on their feet.

“Kabahagi ng buhay natin ang mga ganitong mga sakuna pero palagi po tayong tumatayo at palagi po natin sinisugurado na nagbabayanihan ang lahat (Disaster has been a part of our lives but we always rise again and ensure that we help each other),” he added.