Itogon miners to help open damaged road in Ifugao

ITOGON,Benguet, Nov. 20 (PIA) -- After helping in the search and retrieval operations in a massive landslide in   Natonin, Mountain Province, small scale miners from this town   are on to another mission- to    help typhoon - affected residents in Tinoc, Ifugao.


These small scale miners   will attempt to open a portion of the Buguias-Tinoc-Hungduan Road which was washed out during typhoon Ompong. Incidentally, these miners  are also victims of 'Ompong" (nternational name Manghut) that caused massive landslides in Itogon and killing dozens of individuals.
"We are now preparing for another mission, this time in the landslide affected barangay of Tucukan, Tinoc," Jake Gayog said in an interview.

Gayog said that a team composed of more than 20 small scale miners will proceed to Tinoc this  week to conduct blasting and clearing operations  to   open  a safer road for the residents of the area.

The typhoon -affected small scale miners from Ucab in Itogon, Benguet will now be helping residents in Tinoc, Ifugao to open the Buguias-Tinoc-Hungduan Road which was washed out during typhoon Ompong. The group recently helped in the search, rescue and retrieval operations in landslide affected area in Natonin, Mountain Province. (RMC- PIA-CAR)

Since the road cut in September, residents have to walk more than three hours climbing up and down the mountain side which is their alternate route for the meantime.

Gayog related that while they were in Natonin, a social media post about children and some residents in Tinoc crossing the dangerous road to go to the annual district sports meet in Poblacion, Tinoc was relayed to their team.

"The social media post touched our hearts so we decided to proceed to the area after the turn over of responsibility of the search rescue and retrieval operations in Natonin on Nov. 9  to see what we can do to help more of our kababayans," he said.

Following  their ocular inspection of the area last week,  Gayog said it  is a challenge but he said they will push  through with the task  with  the support of various individuals and groups, some  pledging to  lend  heavy equipment and blasting equipment.

A portion of the Buguias-Tinoc-Hungduan Road which was washed out during typhoon Ompong which will be opened by the small scale miners of Itogon and residetns ofr Tinoc, Ifugao. (Jake Gayog facebook account) 

On  Friday (Nov.16), Gayog personally turned over a letter to DPWH Secretary Mark Villar telling the story of the damaged road and asking support for its opening   during the District Engineers League of the Philippines Convention in Baguio City.

"Barangay Tukucan, a tiny farming village in Tinoc, Ifugao is appealing for urgent help for the rehabilitation of their main road commonly known as Spanish Trail. The road was devastated from the super typhoon Mangkhut and to this day, the road remains to pose serious danger to the community as they start rebuilding their lives," the letter reads.

Gayog also noted in his letter that as per information  from the Office of Ifugao Congressman Teddy Baguilat, the DPWH regional office has endorsed a program of work in the amount of P 100 million for the rehabilitation of the road next year.

"It is heartbreaking to see how the villagers especially the children and elders try to cope with the seriousness of their situation. The villagers have not much recourse but to hope for an intervention for a long term solution."

"As volunteers, we would like to direct their grievances to Department of Public Works and Highways for the immediate road rehabilitation," he said. By Redjie Melvic M. Cawis (JDP/RMC- PIA CAR)






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