The Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Regional Office 5 was commended by the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) for the invaluable contribution to the best interest of the service during the disaster operations in Region 8 and for its unrelenting support to DSWD’s social protection programs.
DPWH Region 5 Operation Tulong to Region 8 Team Leader Elmer R. Redrico received the award during the 63rd DSWD Anniversary celebration held at La Roca Veranda Suites and Restaurant, Legazpi City on February 25, 2014.
It will be recalled that on November 9, 2013, barely 24 hours after Super Typhoon “Yolanda” with international name “Haiyan” hit Samar and Leyte provinces, DPWH-5 Regional Director Danilo E.Dequito immediately ordered the deployment of maintenance equipment and labor force from the Regional and District Engineering Offices (DEOs) to the typhoon stricken areas.
Director Dequito also instructed the preparation of at least 1,000 food packs containing rice, canned goods, coffee, sugar, noodles and bottled water.
The first batch of contingent with road maintenance equipment left Matnog Port in Sorsogon in the morning of Sunday, November 10. Upon reaching for Allen Port in Samar, they regrouped to three teams: first group passed the Wright-Taft-Borongan-Guiuan Road Section; second team follow the direction of DM Jct. San Juanico-Basey-Marabot-Lawaan-Balangiga-Giporlos-Quinapondan Road Section in Samar; and the final team for Tacloban City in Leyte. These teams carried out road clearing, restoration and made the roads passable while on their way to their respective areas of responsibility.
In the afternoon of same day, another group led by RD Dequito followed bringing with them packs of relief goods from contribution gathered region wide by DPWH Region 5 Office. Some benevolent contractors of the region also extended assistance by lending delivery van and donated boxes of bottled water and food packs. Used clothes and other commodities that could be useful to the typhoon stricken region followed through the efforts of DPWH 5 family.
Ensuing days have been devoted to helping Region 8 back on its feet. DPWH Secretary Rogelio L. Singson issued instruction to its central and field offices nationwide to organize their respective Operation Tulong Teams for “Yolanda” victims.
Two months after the typhoon, DPWH Region 5 Team reported the completion of the repair of 68 damaged classrooms in Tacloban City: San Jose Central School; San Jose National High School; and V & G de la Cruz Memorial School including completion of eight (8) out of 14 units of temporary shelters with the remaining six (6) bunkhouse project of DPWH Region 5 90% accomplished.
Also, on February 21, 2014, Director Dequito handed the total amount of P500,000.00 to Director Angela B. Abiqui of the Human Resource and Administrative Service (HRAS), DPWH-Central Office as financial aid to the typhoon victims. Of the total amount of donation, P300,000.00 was from DPWH 5 employees and contractors; and, P200,000.00 was from the Road Engineering Association of the Philippines (REAP) Bicol Chapter which is presently headed by Legazpi City Mayor Noel E. Rosal. Earlier, the amount of P280,000.00 in cash was donated by DPWH Bicol in December last year.