Gov. Joseph C. Cua’s state-of-the-province-address (SOPA) delivered the most comprehensive, in fact, the most serious and compelling report  in this harsh and trying times.  That is, devastated that we are with Covid-19 pandemic, 3 typhoons and recently African swine fever (ASF) cases.     

             Delivered at the most auspicious time on January 18, 2021 during the 3rd Regular Session of the Sangguniang Panlalalwigan (SP) held at SP Session Hall, Legislative Building, Capitol Compound, Virac, Catanduanes, Gov. Cua took this most opportune time in showing his thanks and gratitude to all entities—national leadership/ agencies,  and LGUs, private personalities, private businesses, POs & POs too many to mention.

             He extended his sincerest gratitude to PRRD for the immediate dispatch of the  Civil Defense that eventually led to the temporary restoration of communication in the Provincial Capitol. And of course the Office of the Vice President, national civil and defense agencies.

             Calling it the longest nightmare he had experienced in his capacity as incumbent provincial chief executive, Cua said the damage in agriculture alone costed up to 1.6 billion, with the abaca industry suffering the brunt of the calamity. “Not a single structure stood sturdy against the gales and torrential downpour and the damages as reflected on the two (2) billion worth of damages in government infrastructures. Even the slabs at the grandstand of the DepEd Sports Complex had been completely swept away,” he added. The rest , including food packs assistance, laminated sacks and hygiene kits had been aired live and reported in the print and broadcast media.

              Cua also took cognition of the Bayanihan Spirit provided by  the Task Force Kapatid (TFK) led by NEA, PHILRECA, 43 electric cooperative and recently the seven (7) electric cooperatives from the Bicol Region who have returned to the province speed up the restoration of 81% by the end of this month.

              His program “Sirong sa Harong” aimed at highlighting Catanduanganons brand of kindness and compassion is indeed worth emulating and should be implemented as soon as possible.

              The governor’s call for a proactive disaster preparedness response and addressing th standardization of typhoon-resistant public structures such as schools, government offices  especially evacuation centers need a grandmaster plan. Brimming with conviction and sense of urgency, the governor’s call is imperative: We cannot afford to commit the same mistakes again. 

               As presiding officer of the SP, VG Shirley Abundo’s response is reassuring and therefore requiresthe full backing of the PBMs. As well as the respective municipal chief executives, Vice Mayors/SB members.  No “ifs” and “buts.” Just do it,  ladies and gentlemen.