Never again

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By Giano M. Libot

I have issues

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

TWO years ago the citizens of Cagayan de Oro confronted a tragedy, one that would be the worst of its history. We lost thousands of lives on that fateful day, though our learning’s have come at the highest cost we have navigated ourselves out of future ills collectively, perhaps it is too early to say now, but we have learned from that.

Political pundits may even be in disagreement, but that tragedy in my eyes also spelled the fate for the change of leadership in the city. Sendong displayed for all that was evident, that a city’s leadership must always be there especially at its populace most trying and desperate times.

The importance of the capacity of our head executive to not only lead us to the promise land of progress, but to handle our disasters was made known to our very eyes as a people, we saw degrees of competence and incompetence from the people that formed the pillar of our city government, and I believe in this year’s election, a large part of our calculus went back to the fateful day of the tragedy.

This week, we commemorate and honor those who had been taken away on that day, those whose lives were needlessly wasted because of a tragedy that could have been avoided, and dare I say it again, our reaction now, and our renewed ability now should never have come at their cost, and yet we need to remind ourselves that it did, and it must be honored by protecting the lives of the future, those who live on today and survive, and those who will continue on tomorrow.

This week is not only for those who were taken away, but this is also those who have managed to stay, and those who continue to rebuild their broken lives. We have already resettled most of our brethren, but although we built up their structures, the journey to build back their homes continues on. Some easier than others, a few harder than most. The physical structures may have been built, but to lose a wife, a child, a father, a mother and a family, one part no less important than the others, this week we honor their struggles, and we hope that no one else may have to endure the same fate.

Sendong was an awakening for this city, we would never be commemorating it now had our city been more prepared, it was a tragedy that should have been avoided, and yet here we are, enduring and picking up from what was left for us, may we never come across this again.

Never again; to lose our homes, to lose our lives.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on December 19, 2013.


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