PNoy wants all-weather communications system

By Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Nov. 8, 2013

MANILA – President Aquino has ordered Science and Technology Secretary Mario Montejo to study and propose a “secure all-weather communication system” that can be used and relied on in time of calamities as super typhoon “Yolanda” toppled communication lines.

Communications Secretary Sonny Coloma said government is currently working with telecommunication companies to restore communication lines.

“Inutusan din niya si Secretary Mario Montejo na pag-aralan at magbigay ng kongkretong suhestiyon kung paano po maa-address itong problema na kapag merong ganitong bagyo o kalamidad ay napuputol ang komunikasyon,” Coloma said on government television.

Coloma said the President also ordered Montejo to retrace the path of the typhoon and determine the “areas of greatest impact,” which would be used as guide for rescue and relief operations.

He said the priority of the government is to save lives.

Aquino also issued the following orders:

• For Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin and DILG Secretary Mar Roxas to intensify search, rescue, and relief operations in affected areas and ensure no community is cut off or isolated.
• For the Armed Forces of the Philippines Chief of Staff Emmanuel Bautista to ensure logistical support in disaster response;
• For Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa, Jr. to release P365 million for the Philippine Air Force for the maintenance, petroleum, oil and lubricants of aircrafts that would be used in disaster response;
• For the Department of Energy to work with the National Grid Corporation to restore power in affected areas as soon as possible.

Meantime, Social Welfare Secretary Dinky Soliman assured the President that there are enough relief goods for those affected.

DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson reported that the agency’s personnel are working to remove road blocks created by the storm.

Aquino continues to urge the people to remain calm and heed the warnings of authorities and officials to prevent further casualties.

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