As of of this writing Wednesday, we were still monitoring the status of tropical depression Maymay which weather bureau PAGASA reported to be moving slowly southwestward over the Philippine Sea.
Signal No. 1 was hoisted over at least six areas in Central Luzon with the developing storm expected to landfall in Aurora Province.
We assure the public that the government is not leaving anything to chance as President Ferdinand Bongbong Marcos, Jr. (PBBM) called his disaster and calamity team to a meeting regarding preparations for the possible effects of Maymay.
Immediately following the Cabinet meeting on Tuesday, PBBM showed a sense of urgency over disaster risk reduction operations and the need to ensure public safety, as well as beef up supplies of relief goods.
Despite his tight schedule on welcoming dignitaries at Malacanang Palace, he hurriedly got me, Office of Civil Defense Sec. Jose Faustino and Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Sec. Renato Solidum, Jr. in a huddle.
The President apparently intends to remain on top of the situation, keeping adequately informed of the developments in the face of a possible calamity.
He wants to be aware of what goes on before, during and after the weather disturbance occurs.
PBBM stressed that rescuers must observe strict safety precautions to prevent a repeat of the accident that claimed the lives of five local government rescuers in San Miguel, Bulacan during the height of supertyphoon Karding.
He also assured the disaster and calamity team of his full support and willingness to provide additional logistics in the rescue and relief operations in coordination with the LGUs and government-accredited volunteer groups.
Full-scale preparations are underway in anticipation of Maymay.
Clearly, there is no need for the PBBM to head for the calamity area personally as what his critics would wish him to do.
As DSWD Secretary, I have instructed the agency’s regional field offices to work closely with the LGUs in providing for the basic needs of the residents in affected areas.
He directed Sec. Faustino to mobilize military troops to help in pre-emptive evacuation of residents to safe locations if needed.
Tropical depression Maymay reportedly might “weaken” as it makes a landfall near Baler, Aurora Province but, if it regains strength instead, we will be prepared to duke it out with it at the point of impact.