February 12, 2023 Ryan Ponce Pacpaco 138 views

Speaker’s Disaster Relief and Rehabilitation Initiative donates $100,000 financial assistance

THE House of Representatives, through the Speaker’s Disaster Relief and Rehabilitation Initiative, will extend $100,000 financial assistance as humanitarian aid to thousands of earthquake victims in Turkey, among the first country-responders in the aftermath of Super Typhoon Yolanda (international name Haiyan).

Speaker Ferdinand Martin G. Romualdez said Sunday he was sincerely grateful to Turkey for helping Leyte and many parts of Eastern Samar in November 2013.

Haiyan was one of the most powerful tropical cyclones ever recorded. Its death toll was placed at more than 6,000, with many more missing. Thousands of families were dislocated.

“The assistance extended by Turkey, the United States and our allies and friends abroad helped ease the pain and suffering of our people,” Romualdez said.

The funds will come from the Speaker’s Disaster Relief and Rehabilitation Initiative launched during his 59th birthday celebration last November 14.

During the said event, P70.92 million cash and pledges for disaster victims were generated and the Navotas fire victims were among the first beneficiaries, followed by flood victims in Mindanao and Visayas.

Also last November, the House was able to raise P49.2 million in cash contributions and pledges and in-kind donations such as blankets, food items and toiletries from lawmakers and private entities for the Typhoon Paeng relief drive.

Contributions have so far amounted to P120 million, including assistance to Typhoon Paeng victims.

The Speaker will turn over the $100,000 assistance to Turkey’s Ambassador to the Philippines Niyazi Evren Akyol and his wife Inddri Puspitarasi on Monday at his office at Batasang Pambansa complex in Quezon City.

Other House officials are expected to attend the turnover ceremony.

Instead of gifts in-kind, Romualdez had asked his relatives, House colleagues and friends during his 59th birthday to contribute to a fund drive.

A magnitude 7.8 earthquake struck southeastern Turkey and northwestern Syria on February 6, followed by a 7.5 magnitude tremor that caused numerous aftershocks.

The quakes resulted in the collapse of buildings, houses and historical sites across the region.

As of the last estimate, the death toll was placed at 21,000. Two Filipinos were reportedly among those killed.