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    Posted December 4, 2013 by
    Iloilo, Philippines
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    Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas today advised local officials in Iloilo to coordinate with the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) and map out a ‘cash-for-work’ program for residents displaced by the oil spill in the town of Estancia.
    “Hinihiling ko sa mga lokal na opisyal ng Iloilo, sa pamamagitan ng kanilang social welfare office, na mag-coordinate kay DWSD Secretary Dinky Soliman para mabigyan natin ng hanapbuhay ang mga residente na naapektuhan ng oil spill,” Roxas said.
    “Instead of hiring people from other places to carry out the oil spill recovery and cleanup operations, we will tap the services of some of the affected residents. The Estancia LGU, thru their social welfare offices, will be the ones to identify the residents eligible for the cash-for-work program,” he added.
    The DILG chief, also the vice chairman of the National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council, was accompanied by Soliman and Defense Secretary and NDCC chairman Voltaire Gazmin, in revisiting Yolanda-hit areas in Western Visayas.
    The three Cabinet officials today met with the local officials of Iloilo and visited the evacuation centers in Barangay Botongan in Estancia to personally oversee the provision of food packs and other relief goods to the evacuees.
    Latest reports show those displaced by the oil spill has climbed to at least 4,000 or 1,892 families in the coastal town of Barangay Botongon.
    The oil spill occurred after super typhoon Yolanda damaged a power barge of the National Power Corporation (Napocor), causing more than 200,000 liters of bunker oil to leak in the coastal town of Estancia. The power barge is a 65-meter floating power plant with a total power generation capacity of 32 megawatts.
    Because of the health risks caused by the deadly fumes being emitted by the oil spill, the Department of Health has recommended a ‘forced evacuation’ of the affected residents in nearby evacuation centers.
    The Philippine Coast Guard reported that last October 20, the Power Sector Assets and Liabilities Management (PSALM) Corporation, which owns the damaged power barge that is being managed by Napocor, has hired the services of Kuan Yu Global Technologies, Incorporated (KYGTI) to carry out the oil spill response.
    KYGTI was tasked to siphon and transfer usable oil; refloat the damaged power barge; tow the refloated power barge to a drydocking facility; and containment and clean-up oil spill; and disposal and treatment of waste oil and debris.

    The firm gave a three month timeline or until February 26, 2014 to complete their oil recovery and clean-up tasks

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