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PIA Press Release
Tuesday, January 03, 2012


Swiss Emergency Relief team completes its mission to assist the victims of TS ‘Sendong’

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, January 03 –- The Swiss emergency team, which has assisted in the relief efforts in cities of Cagayan de Oro and Iligan in the wake of tropical storm ‘Sendong’ since December 22 will complete its mission on January 05.

The team, composed of six members, supported the local officials in the re-establishment of the water supply for the city of Cagayan de Oro and for the evacuation centers in both Cagayan de Oro and Iligan.

The total amount of assistance provided by the Swiss government amounted to Php15 Million.

In the wake of the tragic devastation afflicted by TS ‘Sendong’ (Washi) on Eastern and Northern Mindanao and Negros Oriental in mid-December, the Swiss Government, in support of the national and international relief efforts, immediately dispatched a team of four water and sanitation experts and two logistics experts from the Swiss Humanitarian Aid Unit to the most affected areas in Northern Mindanao.

After two weeks of targeted activities in Cagayan de Oro and Iligan, the team will return to Switzerland on January 05, this year.

“The Swiss emergency team has shown tremendous skills and dedication in its efforts to relieve the suffering of the afflicted population,” said Ambassador Ivo Sieber at a press briefing in Cagayan de Oro.

Sieber said their contribution to provide clean water and to assure water supply in various evacuation centers will make a difference in the lives of many.

He also commended the cooperation with and the support offered by the national and local Philippine authorities, the Philippine Red Cross, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) as well as that of NGOs and the private sector, in particular HOLCOM and Nestle.

Team leader Claudio Valsangiacomo confirmed that the delivery of materials and the provision of training will assure a continued supply of clean water to a large number of temporarily displaced and otherwise affected.

The assistance provided by the Swiss emergency team comprises of: the installation of 12 water tanks in different evacuation centers both in Cagayan de Oro and in Iligan, as well as in the Provincial Hospital in Cagayan de Oro;

The delivery of a complete facility for water analysis (laboratory) and the training of local professionals of the Cagayan de Oro Water District (COWD);

The training of chlorination of water truck drivers of COWD and the Cagayan de Oro Fire Department;

The assistance to the COWD during rehabilitation of production wells damaged by the flood; and

The undertaking on January 3-4 of a cleaning exercise in lower Balulang (Angella) with the active involvement of the local community and in collaboration with HOLCIM.

The assistance offered by the Swiss Government to the flood victims of Sendong as cash and in-kind technical contribution amounts to a total Swiss Francs 300,000 (approximately Php15 Million).

Over the past 10 years, the Swiss government has assisted the Philippines to respond to the effects of numerous natural disasters with a total support of more than Php90 million.(PIA10)

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