THE City Government of Davao distributed on Friday P3.4 million worth of financial livelihood assistance to the 68 victims and dependents of victims of the September 2, 2016 Roxas night market blast that killed 15 people and wounded 69 others.
Each identified beneficiary received P50,000 cash assistance.
Joanna Reyes were among those who received worth P50,000 cash livelihood assistance which she is very thankful of.
"Sakit ang nahitabo pero ang atong Presidente, President Rodrigo Duterte, ug City Mayor Sara Duterte-Carpio ug tanang mga local nga ahensya ug tanang nakatabang wala ni sila nagpabaya sa atoang tanan. Nakita nato ang ilang sinseridad sa atoa nga biktima and unta ang ilang tabang nga gihatag sa atoa makahatag ug assistance jud. Nagpasalamat mi tanan kay Atty. Nadela local government of Davao na LGUs kung wala sila, walay maghatag sa ato ug kadasig and hope for the future sa ilang tabang especially sa kadtong mga anak nga nag-iskwela. I-stress lang nato nga thank you sa tanan, hinaut unta magkita-kita na man gud ta dili lang sa ingon ani nga event pero murag family naman gud ta. (The incident was painful to us but our president Rodrigo Duterte, City Mayor Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio, all the local agencies, and all who helped us did not abandon us. We witnessed their sincerity to all the victims including their help. We are thankful to Atty. Nadela and the local government of Davao because if not for them, no one will give us encouragement and hope for the future especially those who are still studying. I want to stress, my deepest gratitude to all, I hope we will still meet each other, since we are already like family)," Reyes said before the crowd of beneficiaries gathered in Grand Men Seng Hotel Friday.
Reyes is the wife of Christian Denver Reyes, 36, who died in the blast.
She and Christian have three young children, who are also being taken care of by Christian's parents.
Meanwhile, Herman Adremesin, father of Senior Police Officer 1 (SPO1) Jay Adremesin who died during the blast, also received cash assistance from the city.
The older Adremesin said that he plans to buy farm equipment to improve his farm in Nurallah, South Cotabato, where he is also residing with his wife.
Adremisin told SunStar Davao they currently have pending request to President Rodrigo Duterte for the transfer of the workplace of his daughter, also a police officer from Bansalan, Davao del Sur to Tagum City.
This is in response to job offered by Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) which he declined due to old age.
"In reference to the phone conversation by DILG last July 29, 2017, regarding the offer of work as assistance to me being the father of the said killed in police operations (KIPO) recipient. With reverence, may I humbly request that this privilege be accorded to my daughter PO1 May Ann Sina-on Adremisin. At present, she is detailed at the Bansalan Police Station, Bansalan, Davao del Sur. If granted, further request that she will be re-assigned to Tagum Police Station, Tagum City," quoted Adremisin's letter of request which was already received by the City Social Services and Development Office.
Adremisin said this is advantageous to his daughter and her family who are now settled in the Tagum City.
Aside from the Adremisin family, Elde Ampaso, a sweet corn vendor who lost a leg after the blast, said that he will use the cash assistance to sell dried fish in his hometown in Butuan City.
Ampaso recalled that he was just standing beside SPO1 Adremisin, queuing for a massage service on the night of the blast.
He said he did not acquire any trauma from the event, and he is wishing that he can still sell goods in the Roxas Night Market.
Meanwhile, Davao City Mayor's Office chief-of-staff Raul Nadela said the extension of livelihood assistance eleven months after the blast was done after a series of livelihood trainings undergone by the beneficiaries.
He said the money comes as a "grant" to the beneficiaries which means that the city will not require returns from their end.
He said a chunk for the trust fund was allotted for the medical assistance of those who still need medical care.
Nadela said children of the victims are also being provided with education assistance through the Educational Benefit Systems Unit (Ebsu) under the CMO.
In an interview with Ebsu Technical Assistant Emilio Domingo Jr. said that their office now shoulders the education of 43 students affected by the blast.
Nadela clarified that the Ebsu is a separate form of assistance not dependent on the trust fund.
Nadela said City Government's LandBank account (1472-1040-00) is still open for the donations.
Published in the SunStar Davao newspaper on August 12, 2017.
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