Aquino visits quake-hit Bohol
MANILA - President Aquino arrived in Bohol Wednesday morning along with several of his Cabinet members to personally see the damage from Tuesday's massive quake.
The Department of Public Works and Highways said at least 14 bridges were damaged during Tuesday's quake, including 3 that sustained heavy damage.
DPWH Secretary Rogelio Singson said the agency will provide temporary bridging materials from Bacolod and Aklan. He said it will take about 4 weeks to put up the bridging materials.
He said the 11 remaining bridges should be passable in a week.
Members of the Philippine Institute of Civil Engineers will also join DPWH bridge and structural engineers in assessing the damage to infrastructure in Cebu and Bohol.
"Hospitals are the highest priority followed by school buildings, municipal halls and public markets. We will go through all these public buildings in that sequence," Singson said.
During the briefing, the President corrected a Department of Trade and Industry official for using the word "critical" to describe the state of petroleum supply in the province.
DTI Regional Director Asteria Caberte said the declaration of the state of calamity in Bohol and Cebu has led to the imposition of an automatic prize freeze to prevent hoarding and price manipulation.
However, she pointed out that petroleum supply in the province is "quite critical" due to a spike in demand after the earthquake.
"This is quite critical because we are running on an 8-day supply. As of the moment, I'm seeking help from the National Price Coordination Council. Katagbakan port is not operational so we have to look for another entry point for petroleum products," she said.
Aquino, however, said it was incorrect to say that the problem in petroleum supply in Bohol was critical especially since the province still has 8 days supply of petroleum on inventory.
"Yung critical is not very critical," he said.
"When we come up with statements the fuel supply is critical, the fear will increase. Let's just be careful. There is no issue. We are creating issues," he added.
Interior and Local Government Secretary Mar Roxas said fuel depots and facilities were not damaged during Tuesday's quake. He said ships carrying petroleum do not need to dock to bring the fuel to Bohol.
Cabinet Secretary Rene Almendras said 14 out of 46 gasoline stations in Bohol are not operational as of Wednesday.
Meanwhile, 62% of power supply in Bohol has been restored as of Wednesday morning.
Caberte said Bohol does not have a problem with rice supply due to large inventories from major suppliers.
She said one major supplier from Ubay, Bohol can ensure 30-day rice supply for the entire province.