Gov't ready for 'Mawar'; LGUs tasked to lead risk reduction efforts

At a glance

  • Mawar is expected to enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility on Saturday, May 27.

  • Marcos says food packs are prepositioned in areas Mawar is expected to hit.

  • Marcos says the national government is ready to assist LGUs.

President Ferdinand "Bongbong" Marcos Jr. said that the national government would be allowing the local government units (LGU) lead the efforts to minimize the damage caused by Super Typhoon Mawar. This is part of the government's new strategy to address the effects of the typhoon.

BRACING FOR TYPHOON - Members of the Philippine Coast Guard (PCG) load relief goods onto an aircraft on Thursday, May 25, as Super Typhoon Mawar intensifies as it enters the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on Friday, May 26. (Bongbong Marcos / PAGASA / Twitter)

Marcos said this as the country braced for "Mawar" as it is set to enter the Philippine Area of Responsibility (PAR) on Saturday, May 27.

In an interview with reporters in Manila, the President assured that the government has been preparing for what was to come.

"We have been preparing for most of this week already," he said.

"Nakapag-forward positioning kami ng mga relief goods doon sa areas na nakikita namin na aabutan ng bagyo, which is mostly Northern Luzon (We have already sent relief goods to the areas in the typhoon's way, mostly in Northern Luzon)," he added.

However, Marcos noted that the government had a different strategy in handling "Mawar," which will go by the name "Betty" once it entered the PAR since it will bring with it the southwest monsoon, which could cause heavy rains even in Visayas and Mindanao.

"It’s a little different form the usual situation kung saan lang dumadaan ang bagyo, yun lang yun lang inaalala natin. Pero iba itong nangyari dito (wherein we only focus on the areas in the typhoon's path. But this time, it's different)," he said.

"Malakas ang typhoon, eh. Humihila siya ng mga weather pattern, pumpasok dito sa Pilpinas (The typhoon is strong. It pulls in different weather patterns). So that’s what we are looking out for," he added.

Because of this, President Marcos said they have decided to let LGUs make the important decisions while the national government will be on standby, ready to support them.

"We have already warned the LGUs to prepare in case of heavy rains and flooding. So ang aming ginagawa ay (What we did is) we leave it to the LGUs right now to make the call kung ano ang gagawin nila pero nandito lang-- sinasabi namin (whatever they must do but we tell them) the national govt is here to assist," he said.

"We are in constant contact with the local governments para makita natin (to see) what is the situation in their place. We are in constant contact with them, also, to find out kung ano yung kailangan nila, ano ang nangayari dun sa lugar nila (what they need and what happened in their area), and then that way, we will be able to respond properly," he added.

On Friday morning, the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) said that "Mawar" intensified as it moved westward over the Philippine Sea.