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Iloilo SP may declare state of calamity due to El Niño

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The Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) of Iloilo may place the province under a state of calamity due to the effects of El Niño phenomenon tomorrow, May 31.

The Committee on Agriculture would issue such recommendation, said SP member and committee chair Marcelo Valentin Serag.

Outgoing Governor Arthur Defensor Sr. requested for such declaration early this month.

“We’ve seen the need to put Iloilo under the state of calamity. It took a while for us to recommend the declaration because we want to ensure that each concern can be addressed,” said Serag.

Under National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council’s (NDRRMC) Memorandum Order No. 86, series of 2018, a city, municipality, province or region may be declared under a state of calamity if at least 20 percent of its population were affected and in need of emergency assistance, and there was widespread destruction of fishponds, crops, poultry and livestock, and other agricultural products.

The Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council earlier said that El Niño has resulted in losses in the agriculture and livestock sectors and 24 percent of the province’s population is already affected.