ILOILO CITY — Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan expresses his gratitude to foreign governments and international aid agencies for their timely outpouring of assistance for victims of Super Typhoon Odette.
“We thank our neighbors once again for being one with the Filipino in this time of great need. We are deeply humbled and thankful. Maraming salamat po,” said Pangilinan, who was among the first to call for international assistance in the aftermath of the Category-5 typhoon.
United States, China, Japan, and United Kingdom were among the countries that have sent the Philippines relief goods that include food, bottled drinking water, generators, tents and sleeping pads, water containers, and plastic sheets.
“The world has come together anew to bring succor and hope to Filipinos who now face Christmas without homes, food, potable water, and electricity,” Pangilinan said.
“Foreign governments and aid agencies, which are also battered by the Covid-19 pandemic, did not think twice about giving what they can to our people,” he said.
“Hindi sila nagreklamo na lubog sila na utang o kaya naman ay hirap din sa pondo dahil sa pandemya. Hindi sila nagdalawang-isip, nagbigay agad ng tulong,” he added.
Pangilinan said international aid is necessary because in confronting the escalating effects of climate change, the Philippines’ resources are likely to be strained to the limit.
Odette, known internationally as Rai, is the strongest typhoon to hit the Philippines this year, leaving a trail of destruction in parts of Visayas and Mindanao where food and water are still scarce, while power and communication lines have yet to be fully restored.
As of December 22, the cyclone has killed 177, displaced over half a million people, and damaged over P300 million worth of agricultural products and infrastructure worth P225 million, according to the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.