Chinese government, Fil-Chi community help with ‘Odette’ relief - SunStar

Chinese government, Fil-Chi community help with ‘Odette’ relief

by Cherry Ann T. Lim

THE Chinese government has donated rice, as well as announced a further P50 million emergency cash assistance to the Philippines as it deals with the aftermath of Typhoon Odette (international name: Rai).

“This morning, I turned over the last batch of the total 10,000 metric tons of China-aided rice to the Philippine government,” Chinese Ambassador to the Philippines Huang Xilian said in a statement on Wednesday, Dec. 22, 2021.

“On the occasion, I announced that the Chinese government has decided to provide the Philippines with additional US$1 million (equivalent to approximately P50 million) emergency cash assistance, to help the government and people in the Typhoon Odette-affected areas overcome the disaster and rebuild their homes at an early date,” he said.

Typhoon Odette hit the Visayas and Mindanao last Dec. 16, bringing sustained winds of 175 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center and gusts of up to 240 kph when it hit Cebu, causing a province-wide blackout and consequently water supply and communication problems.

The cash donation comes after the Chinese government provided 20,000 food packages worth around P8 million and the rice donation.

Each food package contains five kilograms of rice, 10 canned food and 10 noodle packs. The packages are destined for Cebu, Leyte, Negros Occidental, Bohol, Cagayan de Oro City, Surigao City and Negros Oriental.

The rice donation consists of the newest 4.725 million kilograms and remaining 400,000 kg of previous donation that is currently being distributed in Cebu.

The distribution of rice for Central Visayas, of which 1.5 million kilograms was already in Cebu Tuesday, is being facilitated by the Department of Social Welfare and Development.

On Tuesday, Chinese President Xi Jinping offered his condolences to President Duterte and sympathies to the bereaved families and the injured.

On Monday, the Philippine National Police said over 200 people had been killed while 52 others were missing.

As of 6 a.m. of Dec. 23, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said, 3,047,477 persons or 782,475 families had been affected by the storm, of whom 372,421 persons or 92,344 families were now inside evacuation centers.

The Filipino-Chinese community has also raised P20 million for relief goods for areas affected by Typhoon Odette, said Henry Lim Bon Liong, president of the Federation of Filipino Chinese Chambers of Commerce and Industry Inc.

He said the group had raised P12 million through the Filipino Chinese Community Calamity Fund, and P8 million from the Chinese Embassy. (CTL, PR)

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