According to a source who was in the meeting between Pres. Rodrigo Duterte and his cabinet secretaries on one hand, and the local officials and agency representatives on the other, FICELCO OIC-general manager Peter Amaro told Energy Secretary Alfonso Cusi that the cooperative needed only 200 poles for the rehabilitation of the damaged distribution line. Apparently, at the time, the good OIC did not have accurate information on how many poles were broken by Nina’s winds.
As any department head would tell you, having not enough information in your hands when asked by your superior will reflect on one’s competence, especially in times of crisis.
FICELCO’s bright boys in the board should therefore consider bringing back former GM Caloy Gianan’s bright idea of placing numbers on all electric poles, with the coding reflecting its location on specific area maps of the power distribution system.
Once the numbering, or placing numbered metal plates on the poles, is completed, the cooperative should call barangay captains and their respective barangay electricians and give the punong barangay a copy of the distribution line map for his barangay. Then they should convince the village leaders, with the assistance of the electricians, to help them in properly reporting through SMS any damage or untoward incident occurring to the poles. This way, the cooperative would have a faster and accurate means of knowing the extent of damage to the lines, what specific poles were affected and how many would have to be replaced.
Last Saturday, during his meeting with local officials of six towns affected by typhoon Nina, Congressman Cesar Sarmiento got the confirmation that telecommunications firms like Smart and Globe did not send typhoon warnings through text to its subscribers before the storm struck.
The solon asked the question in connection with his interview with broadcaster Ted Failon on the issue of why the telcos were not complying with the provision of Republic Act 10121.
Compliance with the law would have allowed the text warning recipients to adequately prepare ahead of the typhoon and help minimize the destruction and limit casualties.
Rep. Sarmiento disclosed that a hearing on the matter has been scheduled by the House of Representatives so that the people, a majority of whom are cellphone owners, would be ready next time a super howler comes barreling towards Philippine shores.
The meeting at Kemji Resort and Restaurant was called by the congressman so he could inform the mayors – Peter Cua of San Andres, Samuel Laynes of Virac, Francisco Camano Jr. of San Miguel, Eulogio Rodriguez of Bato, and Chito Chi of Baras (Gigmoto’s Armando Guerrero sent a representative) – that he would be coursing through the six LGUs an initial 1,000 bags of rice solicited from House members for the typhoon victims in their areas.
PENRO Joaquin Ed Guerrero made the rounds of the towns of San Andres, Virac, San Miguel, Bato and Baras.
He informed the mayors to circulate to their respective constituents that the DENR would not require that permits be secured for the cutting of fallen trees within private lands for the personal use of the resident.
PENRO Guerrero said, however, that pictures be taken of the fallen tree and that it must be reported to and listed with the barangay chairman.
The PENRO’s prompt action was in consideration of the typhoon victims’ need for lumber to rebuild their destroyed homes, using as source the thousands of trees downed by typhoon Nina.
The tree cutters should also ensure that the chainsaw they will be using is registered with DENR or else they could be charged for violation of law.
Perhaps, the Philippine Coconut Authority should exemp typhoon-hit areas from its three-month ban on the cutting of coconut trees.
AT THE BANK. A mother decided her daughter should have something practical for her tenth birthday and suggested opening a savings account. The girl though this was an excellent idea and so they went along to the bank to fill in the necessary form.
“Since it’s your account,” said the mother, “and you’re so grown up now, you can fill in the form. But if there’s anything you don’t understand, I’m right here.”
The girl did fine until she came to the space for “Name of your previous bank” and, after a moment’s hesitation, she put “Piggy.”