Survivors to transfer to tent city on Friday

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Wednesday, December 18, 2013


AFTER almost a two-week delay, the tent city that the Philippine Red Cross and the Cebu City Government are setting up at the South Road Properties (SRP) will open on Friday.

SRP Management Office chief Roberto “Bu” Varquez said some 38 families (128 individuals) from Eastern Visayas who evacuated here after typhoon Yolanda are expected to move in to the facility.

The families are presently housed at the Barangay Tinago Sports Complex, the only evacuation center left operating.

The four other evacuation centers - Cogon Ramos Sports Complex, Guadalupe Sports Complex, San Nicolas Gym and Capitol Parish Gym - have been closed after the survivors returned to Leyte.

Some of the survivors also went to their relatives in Manila and other areas in Cebu and Mindanao.

In an interview yesterday, Varquez said the City is finishing the compacting of gravel at the site of the tent city to protect it from rain.

“Last Monday’s rain allowed us to see what needs fixing,” he said.

The opening of the tent city, which occupies one hectare out of the three hectare City Hall block at the SRP, has been delayed because the site was muddy. It was supposed to open last Dec. 6.

Varquez said the installation of lights by the Visayan Electric Co. is expected to be finished today as well as the installation of solar panels.

Water tanks

The installation of pipes for the water supply is also expected to be finished today by the Philippine Water Resource Inc. Water tanks will also be installed in the area.

On Thursday, Varquez said the evacuation committee created by the City for the tent city will conduct final inspection on the area.

The committee is composed of former city councilor Jocelyn Pesquera, Department of Social Welfare Services chief Ester Concha, the Department of Public Services and the General Services Office.

The tent city at the SRP can accommodate some 50 families.

Since there are only 38 remaining evacuee families, Concha said they plan to also accommodate to the tent city evacuees that are home-based.

Transfer

“There are people who have expressed willingness to transfer,” she said.

Citing records of the Department of Social Welfare Development 7, Concha said there are 528 evacuee families (3,000 individuals) that are home-based.

They live in the homes of their relatives in Mandaue, Lapu-Lapu Cebu and Talisay Cities.

But Concha said only home-based evacuees in Cebu City will be accommodated in the tent city.

Asked how many months will the evacuees be allowed to live at the tent city, Rama said they can stay in the area for three months up to six months but not more than one year.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on December 18, 2013.

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