AS OF 4 in the afternoon of Feb. 8 (last Thursday) the number of missing persons believed to be buried in the massive landslides in several barangays in Maco, Davao de Oro was already at 110 people. The figure does not include those already recovered dead or injured.
Indeed the flooding and landslides in the Davao Region and in some other provinces in Southeastern Mindanao could most likely be the worst disaster to have hit the country, specifically in this southern Philippine island.
The gravity is not only in terms of the number of people affected but also in the value of crops, damaged infrastructures, and lost livelihood time. With the magnitude of the destruction, we are certain that it will take years for the areas affected and the residents thereat to recover. And if the present political squabble among the country’s leaders will continue all the more the road to recovery will lead to perdition instead.
Yes, in times like this when people and their leaders are supposed to join hands in unity to confront the problems brought about by the disaster, we instead find them busy howling accusations and expanding further the canals of division.
And we keep on asking why is the Philippines so slow in its development, or not moving at all.
Talking of the recent devastating flood that hit the Davao Region including Davao City’s most vulnerable areas, we cannot help but ask, “Where is the city now as far as its flood control program and projects are concerned?”
Yes, every time some sections in the city are inundated in flood water the next thing we hear from the local government is this and that project is due for implementation, ongoing, or considered seriously to avert the possibility of the next more disastrous flood.
Then people see huge pipes lined on the sides of certain city streets, or people from City Hall moving around supposedly conducting surveys of areas appropriate for the construction of flood control projects.
The latest that we have heard of suck project is the construction of a diversion canal for flood water from the Davao River leading to an impounding dam somewhere in between Luman and Waan in Buhangin district. The diverted water will reduce the volume that will flow on the river itself since a sizeable volume will be diverted to the impounding dam. The water will be released later back to the river once the flood subsides. That is how the project is supposed to work, according to the brochure given us.
The multi-million project is reportedly to be funded by the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA). At the time we were told of the proposed flood control project its feasibility study was reportedly ongoing.
It is already more than one year since we learned about the planned JICA-funded project. Yet we have still to hear of the status of the feasibility study and the report of the group organized by the City Planning and Development Office (CPDO) on the outcome of its survey on the planned location of the impounding dam.
Or do the people of Davao City have to wait for another deadly flood to occur for the concerned local government officials to give updates on the project and all about the city’s flood control program?
A 14-year-old girl was bludgeoned to death allegedly by her chat mate when the two finally met. The girl was reportedly lured by the handsome looks of her male cyber friend. But her expectation was far from the truth as the computer-manipulated picture of the male chat friend came out totally the opposite.
And that was when the trouble started, according to the investigation conducted by the Toril Police Station probers.
The girl reportedly slapped the suspect who is now in police custody. In retaliation, the police report further said, the suspect hit the head of the girl with a rock and left her for dead. She died after all with blood still oozing from her broken skull when her body was recovered and dumped in a grassy portion in barangay Bato, Toril district.
That crime is one thing bad about Artificial intelligence (AI) now ruling the highly technological world these days.
Should we be surprised if one day –sooner or later – this creation of the human mind will also destroy humanity?
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