Gov't taking steps to address dry spell – Palace
MANILA, Philippines – With the onset of El Niño in the Philippines, Malacañang sought to reassure farmers in Mindanao that it will do all it can to help those suffering from the dry spell.
On March 11, state weather bureau PAGASA announced the onset of El Niño, causing reduced rainfall and higher temperatures in some parts of the country.
In an interview on DZRB on Sunday, March 29, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda said the government, through the Department of Agriculture (DA), is taking steps to mitigate the effects of the dry spell.
"We are improving the irrigation facilities. Mayroon po tayong tinatawag na ‘salin-tubig’ ng DILG (Department of Interior and Local Government) na ginagawa itong mga proyektong ito," he said.
(We are improving the irrigation facilities. We have what we call the 'salin-tubig' of the DILG, which is in charge of these projects.)
More details will come from the concerned agencies, Lacierda added.
The dry spell has caused at least P155 million in damages in the provinces of Cotabato and South Cotabato alone, according to Bandera.
Earlier this month, DA Secretary Proceso Alcala said his department is prepared to meet the effects of El Niño.
Alcala had earlier called on farmers and the public to conserve water as a precautionary measure.
The department also said it plans to fast-track the implementation of small-scale irrigation projects (SSIPs) under the National Rice Program, in collaboration with the Bureau of Soils and Water Management and DA Regional Field Units. – Rappler.com