Iloilo City Mayor Jerry Treñas urged Ilonggos to be compassionate and pray for the victims of Typhoon Odette this Christmas.
Christmas 2021 is “a very challenging one”, according to the mayor. Aside from the COVID-19 pandemic, Treñas said a Category 5 Typhoon hit Western Visayas and other parts of the country almost a week before Christmas.
“Ang ining paskwa is a very challenging Christmas nga naagyan, na-igo kita sang pandemic, damo kita nga pamilya nagtaliwan, gin-igo pa kita sang bagyo,” he said in a press conference on Wednesday.
The mayor added that he is thankful that the city was spared from the heavy damages caused by Super Typhoon Odette.
Nevertheless, he sympathized with survivors in nearby provinces who will be spending Christmas without their homes and loved ones.
“Gapasalamat kita wala kita naigo but kadamo sang aton utod nga apektado I am very sad that this has happened during a time nga kon tani sadya kita. I know I have seen pictures that unlike us where it will take us 12 months to recover, there will be some people that will take them several years before they can fully recover,” he said.
Hence, the mayor urged Ilonggos to pray for the victims of the typhoon and be compassionate while celebrating Christmas.
“Pangamuyuan talang sila. Let us never forget that while we celebrate Christmas, there are still so many of us who cannot celebrate Christmas because they have lost their houses, they have lost their families, and they are still struggling just to live,” he said.
Region 6, including other nearby regions, have already been placed under a State of Calamity following the widespread damages to houses, properties and infrastructures.
In Western Visayas, a total of 136,099 displaced persons will most likely celebrate their Christmas inside the evacuation centers, based on the latest briefer issued by the Regional Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) as of December 23.
Meanwhile, a total of 48,180 houses were totally damaged while 109,497 houses were partially damaged in the region. (DG)