Aquino visits Nona victims

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PINAMALAYAN, Oriental Mindoro: Two days before Christmas day, President Benigno Aquino 3rd visited Oriental Mindoro and Northern Samar, two of the areas hardest hit by typhoon Nona.

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The President distributed relief goods at the municipal gymnasium in Pinamalayan town where the typhoon made its fifth landfall. Local government officials briefed the President on the extent of the damage wrought by Nona in the province.

The typhoon killed 17 people and affected 180,889 families.

Damage to infrastructure and agriculture in the regions of Mimaropa (Mindoro, Marinduque, Romblon and Palawan), Bicol (Albay, Sorsogon, Masbate, Catanduanes, Camarines Sur and Camarines Norte), Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon) and the three Samar provinces reached nearly P1 billion.

But in Oriental Mindoro, losses in the agriculture, infrastructure and power sectors hit P4.74 billion.

Reports said P3 billion worth of crops and livestock were lost, while damage to roads, bridges, flood control projects and public school buildings worth P1.51 billion.

“The numbers are still being counted as reports from other agencies and offices are still coming in. But we have to pick up the pieces and start rebuilding our province from the debris of this calamity,” Oriental Mindoro Gov. Alfonso Umali Jr. said.

Aquino also visited Northern Samar, where the typhoon affected 137,549 families.

Damage to the province’s agriculture sector was pegged at P211 million, while damage to the coconut industry was placed at P957.9 million because the typhoon affected 47 percent of the province’s coconut farms.

Damage to Northern Samar’s roads and bridges was calculated at P550 million; public buildings, P103.2 million; flood control facilities, P373 million; and port facilities (P20 million).

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