President Rodrigo Duterte (MNS photo)

MANILA, Dec 22 (Mabuhay) — President Rodrigo R. Duterte on Tuesday declared a state of calamity in areas battered by Typhoon Odette, particularly Mimaropa (Region 4-B), Western Visayas (Region 6), Central Visayas (Region 7), Eastern Visayas (Region 8), Northern Mindanao (Region 10), and Caraga (Region 13).

Duterte signed the declaration upon the recommendation of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC).

“The declaration of a state of calamity will hasten the rescue and relief and rehabilitation efforts of the government and the private sector including kung saan galing tulong, be it outside or tayo-tayo lang (where help will come from, whether it be outside or just among ourselves). This will also be an effective mechanism to control the prices of goods and commodities in the areas,” he said.

As of Tuesday morning, the NDRRMC reported a casualty toll of 156, with 37 missing and 275 injured.

The damage to infrastructure was initially estimated at close to PHP449 million, the Department of Public Works and Highways said. (MNS)

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