Hungary, Canada to send aid to Typhoon Odette victims

Maris Federez   •   December 21, 2021   •   932

The Hungarian government announced that it will be sending HUF 20 million (EUR 54,000) to the Philippines for assistance to the provinces affected by Typhoon Odette.

“Many were killed and villages destroyed in the ‘brutal’ natural disaster, while tens of thousands of people lost their homes,” a statement from the Hungarian government said.

Hungarian Foreign Minister Péter Szijjártó cited the large number of people killed and villages destroyed in the “brutal” natural disaster and the tens of thousands of people who lost their homes that prompted the government to send help.

“Also many localities were cut off from the electricity grid,” he added.

Hungary is sending HUF 5 million to Caritas Internationalis, the Philippines branch of the charity.

Szijjártó said this will be used “to fund food packages for families in hardship, and 15 million to the Catholic Archdiocese on the island of Cebu to restore churches hit by the typhoon”.

Meanwhile, Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has announced via Twitter that his government will be sending assistance to the typhoon-stricken areas.

“My heart goes out to the people of the Philippines, whose lives have been forever changed by last week’s super typhoon, ” Trudeau said.

“Canadians are sending our deepest condolences to those who lost loved ones – and we’ll keep everyone affected in our thoughts during this challenging time,” he added.

Trudeau said his country will be sending financial help, “including through the Red Cross, which will help address immediate needs on the ground, such as water and sanitation”.

“In the days and weeks ahead, we’ll continue to help those who need it most,” the Canadian leader said.

Also, Harjit Sajjan, Minister of International Development of Canada, said on a Facebook post the assistance that his country will be sending to the Philippines.

“Canada will always do our part to help in times of need. After a devastating typhoon, @CanadaDev will help our friends in the Philippines with up to $3M in assistance, including $500,000 for the urgent Red Cross response,” he said. —/mbmf

Distribution of gov’t cash aid for victims of Typhoon Odette to begin this week — DILG

Robie de Guzman   •   January 6, 2022

MANILA, Philippines — The distribution of cash assistance for severely affected survivors of Typhoon Odette is expected to begin this week, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said.

In his report to President Rodrigo Duterte during a meeting with Cabinet officials, DILG Secretary Eduardo Año said the P4.8 billion budget for the cash assistance program has already been downloaded to 420 cities and municipalities.

Año said the distribution was to begin Wednesday for LGUs that have already completed the list of beneficiaries.

Orientations on how the money will be handed out to beneficiaries have also been conducted, he added.

The cash aid will be given to low-income families who were badly affected by the typhoon. An individual may receive P1,000 while a family may receive P5,000.

Areas covered by the cash aid program are from 27 provinces in MIMAROPA, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Eastern Visayas, CARAGA, and Northern Mindanao.

Concerned LGUs have up to 15 days to finish the distribution of the cash assistance.

Duterte said the cash aid is on top of the construction materials that will be given to the typhoon survivors to rehabilitate their homes.

The government will also provide roofing materials and lumber to the survivors, as well as the services of carpenters and shelter builders from the government, the president said.

Undersecretary Ricardo Jalad, Office of Civil Defense administrator, reported that there were 1,242,737 families or 4.8 million persons in 38 provinces affected by Typhoon Odette.

Some 475,160 displaced individuals are currently taking shelter in evacuation centers and with their relatives.

Supreme Court reduces coverage, duration of Bar exams

Robie de Guzman   •   January 4, 2022

MANILA, Philippines – The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday announced it has reduced the coverage and the duration of the Bar Examination in view of the Omicron COVID-19 variant and effects of the Typhoon Odette.

In a statement, the SC said that, upon the recommendation of the Bar Chairperson, has resolved to reduce the coverage and shorten the duration of the 2020/21 Bar Examinations pro hac vice.

“The Court noted that the bar examinees for this coming bar has reviewed for longer than all the other batches taking the bar exams under very difficult conditions,” it said.

Per the Court En Banc’s January 4, 2022 Resolution, the examinations with the revised coverage will be held on January 23, 2022, Sunday; and on January 25, 2022, Tuesday, the high court said.

The Bar exams was supposed to be held for four Sundays starting January 16.

The SC said examinees will take four sets of examinations, encompassing the usual eight subjects: (1) The Law Pertaining to the State and Its Relationship with Its Citizens (formerly Political Law, Labor Law, and Taxation Law); (2) Criminal Law; (3) The Law Pertaining to Private Personal and Commercial Relations (formerly Civil Law and Commercial Law); and (4) Procedure and Professional Ethics (formerly Remedial Law, Legal Ethics, and Practical Exercises).

“The Bar Chairperson will release Bar Bulletin No. 31, s. 2022 which provides the revised coverage for each examination,” the SC said.

“All examinees are strongly advised to self-quarantine starting January 9, 2022, or at least two weeks before the Bar Examinations,” it added.

The Supreme Court said these changes pro hac vice seek to meet the demand for new lawyers amid the disasters plaguing the country.

It also noted that the Philippines has produced no new lawyers since the pandemic started in March 2020.

NTF confident of reaching 54M fully vaxxed target in January

Maris Federez   •   December 31, 2021

MANILA, Philippines — The National Task Force (NTF) against COVID-19 is confident that the country will be able to reach its  target of 54 million fully vaccinated individuals by the first week of January 2022.

NTF chief implementer and vaccine czar Secretary Carlito Galvez, Jr. said that despite the suspension of vaccination rollouts in several areas in Visayas and Mindanao, the number of people inoculated against COVID-19 continues to go up.

Galvez noted that the vaccination drive in several areas in Visayas and Mindanao was delayed due to the onslaught of Typhoon Odette.

“Na-breach na po natin iyong 50 milion. Napakagandang ano po iyon kasi 54 million, kung ita-translate po natin iyan ay na-delay lang po tayo ng one week or two weeks sa ating vaccination because nakita natin dahil nga sa unintended event na iyong Odette talagang malaki, anim na region ang tinamaan. Kung sana hindi tinamaan iyon, baka makaya po natin iyong 54 million,” Galvez said.

Meanwhile, 8- million children aged 12 to 17 have already received vaccination. From this number, 5.2 are fully vaccinated.

The government is now coordinating with Pfizer for the early delivery of COVID-19 vaccines for children aged 5 to 11 years old. —/mbmf (from the report of UNTV Correspondent Aileen Cerrudo)

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