Duterte 'likely' to declare 3 typhoon-hit regions under state of calamity
President Rodrigo Duterte is "most likely" to place Bicol, Calabarzon and Mimaropa under a state of calamity after the onslaught of super typhoon Rolly last week, his spokesman said Monday.
A state of calamity would allow local officials to tap emergency funds.
"Hintayin po natin ang papel mismo na manggagaling sa tanggapan ng Presidente," Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque told reporters.
(Let us wait for the document that will come from the Office of the President.)
The world's strongest typhoon of the year left at least 20 dead after it battered provinces south of Manila last week with gusts of up to 310 kilometers per hour (190 mph).
Rolly partially damaged more than 55,000 homes and flattened 20,000 more, said disaster management chief Ricardo Jalad.
In the aftermath of the typhoon, more than 50,000 homes were without power on the main island of Luzon, which accounts for more than two-thirds of the Philippine economy.
Strong winds and torrential rain have damaged crops worth P1.7 billion, mainly rice and corn, Agriculture Secretary William Dar said.
Rolly is the 18th to hit the Philippines this year and one of the strongest typhoons since Yolanda killed more than 6,300 people in 2013.
The state weather agency forecasts two to three more typhoons to enter the Philippines in November and another one to two in December. The Philippines, an archipelago of more than 7,600 islands, sees around 20 tropical storms annually.
— With a report from Reuters