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The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (CDRRMC) will adopt a resolution to recommend the declaration of Puerto Princesa under a “state of calamity” because of the water crisis.

In a meeting on Friday, the CDRRMC said the dry spell caused by the El Niño has made water scarce all over the city.

City legal officer Arnel Pedrosa said the CDRRMC resolution will be forwarded by Mayor Lucilo Bayron to the City Council for approval.

“Sa council meeting ng CDRRMC nagkaroon ngayon ng reason na mag-declare ng state of calamity. Magre-release kami ng resolution signed by all the members [of CDRRMC], we will recommend it to the mayor, then we will forward it to the Sanggunian [Panlungsod]. Yes, [kailangan nito nang approval ng Sanggunian] mga Monday,” he said.

Aside from the water crisis, Pedrosa said the City Agriculture Office (CAO) also reported a P5,768,088 loss in crop production for the first quarter of the year due to the dry spell.

City DRRM Office chief Earl Timbancaya said the declaration is also because the number of households affected is already big.

“Naglaro po ‘yan doon sa population na apektado sa damage sa agrikultura and ‘yong present status po ng ating lifeline which is ang tubig po. Well, ‘yong mangyayari po nito, ‘yong city mayor as the chairman of CDRRMC council, kaniya pong ire-recommend ito sa Sangguniang Panlungsod for approval since ‘yong declaration talaga ng state of calamity is manggagaling dito sa Sangguniang Panlungsod,” Timbancaya said.

However, he said they still have to determine the calamity amount.

Jeovanne Sacedon, Princesa Princesa City Water District (PPCWD) acting division manager, said in his report to the CDRRMC, that there are already 21 barangays with a total number of 65,445 residents affected by the water crisis during the period of February to April.

Jenn Rausa, PPCWD acting information officer, said putting the city under a state of calamity “will fast-track the procurement of materials for their contingency measures.”

Among the measures is the cloud seeding operations aimed at increasing the water supply in the Campo Uno dam in Barangay Irawan.

Rausa said the cloud seeding set next week needs 400 sacks of salt costing P90,000 and the rental of the aircraft estimated at P1.8 million.

“Hopefully, po maging favorable [sa atin] ang resulta ng kanilang meeting sa [City Council]. Feeling ko naman po ay ma-hi-heed ng ating City Councilors ‘yong atin pong concerns at pangangailangan,” Rausa said.

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