Saturday, 20 July 2019

Sulong Kaligtasan takes lead in Region 12

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (August 7, 2016) – Under Sulong Sarangani, the disaster management sub-program Sulong Kaligtasan has become a model for other local government units (LGUs) in Region 12’s disaster readiness drive.

Underscoring responsibility and resilience, Sarangani Governor Steve Chiongbian Solon shared about the province’s programs and projects in addressing disasters and emergencies during the Regional Flood Summit on July 29 at Phela Grande Convention Center.

“The objective of the Flood Summit is to gather and update DRRM managers and key personalities from the local government units and the Regional Risk Reduction Management Council members on the region’s vulnerability to flood hazard versus its capacity and resiliency,” said General Santos City DRRM officer Dr. Agripino Dacera, Jr..

The summit was anchored on the theme “Kahandaan at Pagtugon sa Sakuna, Tungkulin ng Bawat Isa”.

Governor Solon stressed the obligation of LGUs to keep their constituents safe and protected when disasters strike.

A major theme in Sarangani’s development is convergence among its departments, divisions and LGUs which has given birth to Sulong Sarangani, a banner program.

“It allows better cohesion among departments and ensures non- duplication of projects and programs,” according to Solon.

Sulong Kaligtasan is managed by the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO)

“We operate a 24/7 emergency response station called SAR 117,” said PDRRMO Rene Punzalan.

It operates exclusively within the seven municipalities of Sarangani and as of today, it is going through an enhancement parallel with President Rodrigo Duterte’s 911 emergency hotline.

Adding up to the province’s disaster resiliency thrust is the Galileo Philippines GPS Tracking System which is installed in heavy equipment, light vehicles and trucks of the provincial government.

It monitors the exact location of all units and monitors fuel consumption.

“This makes disaster response more efficient by knowing the proximity of units ‘ground zero’ for quicker response times,” Solon explained.

More so, the radio system was reinstated and the repeater links that enable faster communication in the province has been upgraded.

Recently, Multi-purpose Siren System units were installed in flood- prone barangays where each siren has a 5-kilometer radius with a public address system.

The onset of La Nina prompted the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) and the Office of the Civil Defense (OCD) to intensify advocacy on DRRM thru the conduct of the 2016 Flood Summit.

SOCSKSARGEN region is composed of four provinces, five cities, and 45 municipalities. Major river basins’ locations like the Mindanao, Cotabato and Buayan- Malungon rivers and the Buayan- Malungon river basin expose majority of the population to various hazards most especially, flooding.

The Malungon-Buayan River Basin program has been created to plan out and reforest the area. Governor Solon was appointed as the chairperson.

Sarangani has been recognized as one of the most disaster resilient provinces in Region 12 for bagging the Gawad Kalasag award for two consecutive years, 2014 and 2015. (Cherry Marie Irish D. Cruz /SARANGANI INFORMATION OFFICE)

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