Biliranons get free transport from typhoon-hit Cebu – Manila bulletin

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CITY OF CEBU – The provincial government of Biliran has come to the rescue of its constituents who are rushing to leave this city hit by the typhoon.

Exactly one week after Typhoon Odette hit Metro Cebu, four Visayan Liner buses arrived in Cebu from Biliran on Thursday, December 23 and carried nearly 200 biliranons to their province.

Jennifer Pitao (in yellow shirt), social worker in the Department of Social Protection and Development of Biliran, facilitates the trip of some Biliranons from Cebu City to Biliran on Thursday, December 23. (Calvin D. Cordova / Manila Bulletin)

Buses arrived in Cebu via Danao City in the afternoon and returned to Biliran by the same route at 3pm.

The city’s port terminals were filled with travelers within days of the typhoon.

Odette’s ravages such as the cut-off of electricity, water supply and telecommunications signal had caused so much inconvenience, prompting many people to return home to their provinces.

The influx of passengers made the trip difficult.

Aware of the situation, Biliran governor Rogelio Espina tasked the province’s Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office to contact Biliranons in need of transport from Cebu to return home, said Jennifer Pitao, social worker in the Department of Social Protection and Development of the province.

“In our list, a total of 255 passengers contacted our PDRRMO for free transportation,” Pitao said.

In addition to free transportation, each traveler also received from Espina a meal allowance worth P 150 in addition to a free bottle of water.

“Some of the travelers we have picked up are Biliranons who have lived here, or those who work or study here. Some were in Cebu for a walk but found themselves stranded after the typhoon hit, ”Pitao said.

Abigail Ticol, one of the Biliranons who took advantage of the free trip, breathed a huge sigh of relief when she learned of the province’s initiative.

“We are very grateful to Governor Espina. It has been very difficult here because the prices of basic products have gone up, ”said Ticol, who works as a teacher at one of the universities in the city.

Ticol, from Barangay Cabucgayan, Biliran, said she had tried to get home but couldn’t stand the long lines at ticket offices.

“I stood in line but couldn’t buy a ticket. The queues were very long at the terminals, ”Ticol said.


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