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Sarangani, DSWD 12 extend relief aid to displaced families in Maitum

PHOTO/S: Sarangani Ronda Probinsya Facebook Page

GENERAL SANTOS CITY (PIA) -- The provincial government of Sarangani is closely monitoring the ongoing armed conflict at Sitio Badol, Brgy. Mindupok, Maitum, which resulted in the displacement of at least 467 families and individuals, starting June 8.

Until now, the families have remained at the five evacuation centers in Maitum for protection and safety, said Sarangani Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management (PDRRM) Officer Rene Punzalan.

He said that as of June 15, key government authorities have taken some valuable actions "to coordinate peace talks" between the feuding groups to stabilize the situation so that IDPs, or internally displaced persons, can return to their respective homes.

According to him, contingents from the Philippine Army were also deployed in the area to prevent a further escalation of conflict between the warring MILF groups.

Punzalan said that with the fight having started earlier, the Dept. of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) 12 has immediately mobilized the distribution of relief goods worth P175,632 as humanitarian assistance, with the provincial government conducting a medical checkup for IDPs at the evacuation centers on June 14.

He said that Sarangani Gov. Rogelio Pacquiao gives importance to providing for the needs of the residents affected by the conflict.

Hence, the province, through Governor Pacquiao's Ronda Probinsya and the Sarangani Barangay Affairs Unit, also distributed relief goods, including maintenance medicines and vitamins for senior citizens at the shelter.

Hot meals are also being continuously prepared by the municipal government of Maitum through the community kitchens established by its municipal DRRMO and MSWDO.

Punzalan also said that aside from government assistance, business sectors like Panhua Integrated Steel, Inc., and Alson’s Development Corporation have also provided some relief goods in the form of food items for the IDPs. (CTA/PIA SarGen)

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