San Luis folk in peril with breached dike

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Tuesday, January 28, 2014

SAN LUIS -- More than 5,000 families and millions worth of private and public properties in three barangays are at risk from flooding due to the 100-meter riprap breach along the Barangay Sta. Cruz Poblacion portion of the Pampanga River here.

Mayor Venancio Macapagal told Sun.Star Pampanga in an exclusive interview that residents in Barangays Sta. Cruz, San Sebastián and Sto. Tomas are living in constant fear due to the breached portion of the dike.

Macapagal said that the riprap suffered a 100-meter recently, causing concerns of imminent massive flooding once the rainy season sets in.


"Natatakot ang mga kababayan natin dito na kung darating ang malaking tubig mula sa Pampanga River ay baka maraming buhay ang masawi at kasabay nito ang pagkasira ng kanilang mga bahay at mga ari-arian nila," Macapagal said.

He said that multi-million pesos worth of properties will also be destroyed if flood waters will inundate the town proper where schools, gasoline stations, banks, churches, municipal hall, parks, museum and other private and public structures are located.

Macapagal said that he has already sought the help of Governor Lilia Pineda, Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) Regional Director Antonio Molano Jr. and fourth district Representative Rimpy Bondoc for the immediate repair of the breached dike.

Meanwhile, Sta. Cruz Poblacion barangay chairman Juan "Mighty" Carlos said that 300 indigent families will be directly hit by possible massive flooding from the breached riprap because their houses are near the dike.

Carlos said that the families refuse to leave the "danger zone," saying that "they have nowhere to go."

"Pinakikiusapan ko sila na lumikas na bago dumating ang tag-ulan. Kaya lang ang katwiran nila ay wala naman silang malilipatan," Carlos said.

He said that the Barangay Council has already passed a resolution seeking the assistance of the national and provincial governments for the immediate repair of the breached portion before the onset of the rainy season.

First Councilor Cesar Lagman said that he will file a similar resolution on Friday before the Sangguniang Bayan seeking the immediate action of concerned government agencies like the DPWH.

"Sana ay mabigyan pansin ito ng mga nakakataas na nanunungkulan natin para naman mailigtas namin ang buhay ng libo libo namin kababayan at mga milyon-milyon na ari-arian," Lagman said.

Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on January 29, 2014.

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