Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Damn the Dams?

Dear insansapinas,
Hours after the height of the ONDOY disaster, my sister in the Philippines e-mailed
us the pictures of the extent of damage in our village. Sabi nga, pag bumaha doon, lubog ang Metro Manila. and it happened after more than thirty years that the house was buult. Sabi niya, she heard that water from the dam was released during the typhoon.

A friend of mine told me that releasing water from the dam is a precaution to ensure the safety level of the dam to avoid further damage if it cracks.

Then I read this article.

Here is the excerpt of her article which is her conclusion of the discussion of events of the reported release of the water from the dam.

what were they thinking? that all that additional water would drain directly out to the manila bay? nakalimutan nila, o hindi nila alam, that rivers along the way are all silted up because of land erosion, thanks to deforestation, and esteros are all clogged up with nonbiodegradable plastic trash, thanks to an mmda that’s apparently given up on the garbage problem? no wonder kung saan-saan nakarating ang baha.

of course it’s quite possible that government officials just didn’t want to cause panic. imagine the hysteria, and the horrendous traffic once people started evacuating. but, hey, in such a crisis a good leader should have no trouble addressing the people, explaining the situation, allaying fears, offering advice, and mobilizing the media and the internet to assist and facilitate.

anc’s pia hontiveros is so right to ask, bakit walang warning? maybe authorities were correct to release the water in controlled increments, maybe it was the lesser evil. but but but the public should have been seriously warned. the people deserve to be given adequate information on matters that affect their lives so that they can make the right decisions, that is, whether to stay and brave the elements, in which case, walang sisihan! or whether to go and seek higher ground while there’s time, with at least some possessions and their dignity intact.

meanwhile, let’s pray really hard that typhoon peping changes course.


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