Super Typhoon Yolanda was one of the most powerful and strongest storms ever recorded which incurred the most devastating damages not just in the Philippines but in Southeast Asia. In our country, aside from Tacloban City, municipalities of Coron and Busuanga in Palawan were also heavily damaged. Around 360 hectares and 201 farmer beneficiaries were affected by the said typhoon. The total damage to irrigation facilities amounted to 10.5 million pesos.
Farmer’s Point of View
Mr. Renato Correa, president of San Nicolas-Coron-Palawan IA Inc. under the San Nicolas Communal Irrigation System (CIS), is one of the farmers affected by the Super Typhoon Yolanda. He is a former teacher before he became the president of the association and has been serving for two years now.
“Isa sa na-damage ay yung banana plantation ko at manggahan ko.” Said Mr. Correa. “Yung 30 bearing fruit ay natumba lahat. At merong ilan na namatay agad.”
He recalled that he was in a seminar (as a teacher) when the Typhoon happened and was only informed by his wife that their properties were destroyed.
“Ilang ektarya ang napuno ng silt.” Mr. Correa recalled. “Yung palay namin na aanihin na sana, ay na-damage din.”
NIA’s Action Plan
The National Irrigation Administration MIMAROPA immediately reported said damages to the Central Office to request for funding in repairing the damages. In CY 2017, a total of 4.8 million pesos was allocated to the province of Palawan under the Comprehensive Rehabilitation and Recovery Plan (CRRP). The budget is allocated for the 4 damaged projects particularly San Nicolas CIS, Borac II CIS, Borac III CIS and Sto. Niño CIS. All projects are already completed.
Now that the irrigation projects are repaired, the affected farmer beneficiaries are slowly rising up to face another day and improve their lives.
“Nagkakabunga na ang mga fruit-bearing trees tulad ng manga. Yung iba ngayon pa lang lumalaki.” Shared Mr. Correa.
San Nicolas CIS was only able to irrigate 40 hectares before it was damaged by Super Typhoon Yolanda. Upon its rehabilitation, the project now irrigates 50 hectares of farmlands.
“Nagpapasalamat kami sa NIA mula sa Central Office down to the local kasi itinuon nila ang serbisyo sa magsasaka. Kasi magsasaka ang nagbibigay ng pagkain. Kung walang magsasaka, magugutom ang mga Pinoy.” Stated Mr. Correa.