JdV brings home 10 rubber boats for rescue operation during flood

October 12, 2009 10:52 pm 

By Leonardo V. Micua

DAGUPAN CITY, Oct. 13 — Pangasinan Fourth District Rep. Jose de Venecia Jr. has brought home 10 brand new rubber boats, may be too late for rescue operations in floods spawned by typhoon “Pepeng” but just in time for any future flood.

De Venecia was in Thailand when he learned that Pangasinan was being flooded last Thursday and some of his constituents, particularly in Mangaldan town, needed immediate evacuation because of the high flood.

Immediately, he mobilized his friends who are member of Asian Inter-Parliamentary Union (IPU) of which he is president, to help him source out donation for rubber boats which are vital equipment for saving people isolated by floodwater.

Some of his fellow members of IPU from Korea whom he reached by phone responded and immediately donated 10 rubber boats, each fitted with Japanese-made Suzuki engine.

They put the rubber boats on board Korean Air Lines that arrived at the Ninoy Aquino International Airport at 3:00 a.m. of Saturday, an hour ahead of his arrival from Bangkok, Thailand.

These were brought by 10-wheeler truck to Dagupan, but at that time rescue operations for flood victims marooned by the high flood was already over.

The rubber boats are a big boon to Pangasinan because in an inventory conducted by the Provincial Disaster Coordinating Council (PDCC), it was found out that for a big province like Pangasinan, it has only two rubber boats with Dagupan City owning another two.

De Venecia made available one rubber boat each to Dagupan, Mangaldan, San Fabian, San Jacinto and Manaoang.

He is reserving one rubber boat each to Reps. Mark Cojuangco of the fifth district, Victor Agbayani of the second district, Rachel Arenas of the third district and Conrado Estrella III for the sixth district; and Governor Amado Espino Jr.

Other threatened towns of Pangasinan will receive rubber boats too when he brings another set of this equipment from Korea and Japan, he said.

These rubber boats are good for ocean, rivers and shallow water for search and evacuation and for rescue of people in case of flood, he added.

At the same time, de Venecia said he will sit down shortly with fellow Northern Luzon congressmen to see how they can mobilize nationwide assistance for Northern Luzon similar to what they did during the earthquake of July 16, 1990.

He said as an ordinary congressman in 1990 and with the support of his fellow congressmen from all over the country, he was able to raise P10 billion from abroad to fund the rehabilitation of earthquake-damaged areas in Luzon.

“I’m willing to sit down with President (Gloria Macapagal) Arroyo, Speaker Prospero Nograles and congressmen, governors, mayors and civil society organizations of the country to see how we can —in partisan or bi-partisan spirit— address this problem of rebuilding and rehabilitating Northern and Central Luzon," he said.

He added: “We’ve succeeded in the past, I see no reason why we will not succeed once more.” (PNA) LDV/lvmicua/rma

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