San Jose De Buenavista, Antique was declared under a state of calamity because of the adverse effects of El Niño in the whole province.
The declaration was approved by the Antique Provincial Board during its recurrent meeting session based on Resolution No. 4, which the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council passed (PDRRMC) on June 12.
The Provincial Board Member Santiago Lotilla IV aforesaid: “Whereas, the Office of the Provincial Agriculture as head of the El Niño Task Force, submitted a damaged report on affected rice fields, crops, as well as the number of farmers and fisherfolk in the entire province,”
He also mentioned that aside from the unfavorable effects of the El Niño to the agriculture sector, there was also a widespread effect on communities due to the drying up of their water sources for drinking and household needs.
As per Lotilla, four municipalities namely Sebaste, Barbaza, Sibalom, and Anini-y have already declared their respective areas under the state of calamity.
Provincial Agriculturist Nicolasito Calawag, who was present during the deliberation of the provincial board, said that the total losses in agriculture were estimated at PHP 50 million. There are still municipalities that have not stated their damage report, he added.
“Upon the declaration of the state of calamity the PDRRM Quick Response Fund could be utilized for the relief, rehabilitation and other necessary assistance, works or services to the affected areas or population,” PDRRM Officer Broderick Train said.
He also stated that an amount not exceeding PHP10 million from Antique’s PDRRM Quick Response Fund could be used to assist the affected farmers and other people who need help from the provincial government.
Farmer Melvin Jamandron of Bongbongan II from Sibalom town and a member of the Paghugpong sang mga Mangunguma sa Panay and Guimaras (PAMANGGAS) expressed that they could receive assistance from the provincial government now that it is planting time. “We need palay seeds to be planted,”