PRESIDENT Ferdinand “Bongbong” Marcos Jr. and Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez on Wednesday distributed land titles to Pabahay housing beneficiaries rendered homeless by super typhoon Yolanda 10 years ago.
“This is not merely a piece of paper. It represents our commitment to providing a stable and secure future for our people. It symbolizes hope, permanence, and the dream of every resident of Tacloban to have a place they can genuinely call home,” Speaker Romualdez said during the 10th-year Yolanda commemoration held at the Tacloban City Convention Center.
“Ito po ay handog sa atin ng Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos Jr. Bawat titulong hawak ninyo ay simbolo ng ating pagkakaisa para masigurong may maayos, mapayapa at maunlad na komunidad ang mahal nating Tacloban,” he said.
The House leader said the distribution of land titles to displaced families was “a significant milestone in our journey to build and uplift our community” from the widespread devastation caused by Yolanda.
“A decade has passed, but the memories of that fateful day remain etched in our hearts and minds,” he added.
He recalled that during that fateful day, he “witnessed firsthand the sorrow and loss that overwhelmed our community.”
“Yet, amidst the rubble and tears, I also saw the indomitable spirit of our people. I witnessed neighbors helping neighbors, strangers becoming family, and a nation rallying together to rise again. Kasama nating umiyak at nakiramay sa mga nawalan ng mahal sa buhay ang panauhing pandangal natin ngayon, si Pangulong Ferdinand Marcos, Jr.,” he said.
“Kasama natin siya sa pagbibigay ng agarang pagtulong sa mga nasalanta ng bagyo. Mula noon hanggang ngayon, kasama natin siya sa pagbangon hindi lamang sa Tacloban kundi maging sa iba pang lugar na winasak ni Yolanda,” he said.
Speaker Romualdez appealed to his constituents that as they remember Yolanda, “let us also celebrate the resilience, unity, and hope that have defined our recovery journey.”
“The road has been challenging, but with each passing year, our collective strength and determination grow even more evident,” he said.
As he continues to represent his district in Congress, he said he is always reminded of the lessons of Yolanda, one of the most powerful tropical cyclones ever recorded.
“It is my solemn pledge to serve relentlessly and do everything in my power for the welfare and progress of our people, ensuring that we are better prepared and more resilient for any future challenges,” he said.
“Hindi tayo mapapagod sa pagkilos para sa kagalingan ng mga kababayan natin dito sa Tacloban. Hindi tayo titigil sa pagbangon hanggang hindi natin natitiyak na may magandang kinabukasan ang ating mga anak at ang susunod na henerasyon,” he added.
The House leader also paid tribute to thousands who died during the onslaught and in the aftermath of the super typhoon.
“Today, let us also pause to remember those we lost, honor the heroes who emerged in the aftermath, and express our gratitude for the countless blessings we have received. Our story is one of triumph over adversity, and as we continue on this journey, let’s carry the legacy of Yolanda as a testament to the unyielding spirit of our people,” he said.
President Marcos delivered an inspirational message before the distribution of land titles, while Tacloban City Mayor Alfred Romualdez welcomed the Chief Executive, Speaker Romualdez and other guests.
A celebration of the Holy Mass preceded the simple ceremony.
The President, accompanied by Speaker Romualdez, also graced the opening of the Visayas leg of the 2023 Handa Pilipinas, an exposition of innovations in disaster risk reduction and management.