Senator Christopher “Bong” Go, an adopted son of CALABARZON, directed his team to provide assistance to 30 fire-hit residents in Barangay Primera Pulo, Lumban, Laguna on Thursday, September 21.
“Mga kababayan ko, alam n’yo napakaimportante po ng buhay at ng kalusugan ng bawat isa. Ang gamit naman po ay nabibili natin. Nalalabhan natin ‘yung damit natin ‘pag nasusunugan tayo. Subalit ‘yung perang kikitain natin ay hindi po nabibili ang buhay. Ang nawalang buhay po’y wala na talaga. A lost life is a lost life forever. Kaya mag-ingat po tayo palagi,” Go said in a video message as he emphasized the irreplaceable value of life and health, and urged the community to always exercise caution.
Go’s team, in coordination with the local government officials, distributed financial assistance, grocery packs, snacks, clean drinking water, and shirts to all affected families at the barangay hall of Brgy. Primera Pulo.
Meanwhile, a team from the National Housing Authority (NHA) assessed affected households for possible housing assistance to help the families rebuild from the devastating effects of the fire.
“Yung mga mag-qualify ay maaaring mabigyan ng National Housing Authority ng ayuda pambili ng housing materials tulad ng pako, yero at iba pa upang maisaayos muli ang kanilang mga tirahan,” Go said.
The mood was clearly one of gratitude as local leaders and community members openly thanked Go for his personal assistance.
Lumban Councilor Saan Añonuevo spoke with a sense of urgency and praised the senator’s efforts. “Napakalaking bagay po ng natutulong ni Senator Bong Go dito sa bayan ng Lumban,” she said. Añonuevo also pointed out that this was not the first time Go helped the community as he had also given cash assistance to the residents during the pandemic.
Councilor John Denver delos Reyes also expressed his respect for the senator, emphasizing the quality of his service. “Ako po personally, hindi ko kayang kalimutan ‘yung quality of service na ibinibigay sa atin ni Mr. Malasakit Kuya Bong Go,” he stated.
Barangay Chairman Reden Rivera summed up the community’s feelings, saying, “Ang sangguniang barangay ng Primera Pulo ay lubos na nagpapasalamat sa napakasipag at napakabait na senator na si Senator Bong Go,” he said.
Rivera noted that Go was the first senator to provide aid to the 16 households affected by the fire.
One of the fire victims, Ramilita Fesalbon, held back tears as she thanked the senator. “Kami po ay nagpapasalamat sa inyo, senator, sa pagtulong niyo sa aming lahat sa mga bagay na kailangan namin ngayon,” she said.
In order to proactively mitigate potential disasters caused by fire incidents, Go highlighted that the Bureau of Fire Protection (BFP) is presently undergoing a modernization initiative aimed at bolstering its capacity to effectively address fire emergencies and disaster situations.
Under the provisions of Republic Act No. 11589, principally authored and co-sponsored by Go, the bureau is mandated to implement a decade-long modernization program. This comprehensive program includes procurement of state-of-the-art firefighting equipment, expansion of personnel, and delivery of specialized training to firefighters, among other enhancements.
“Modernizing the Bureau of Fire Protection is crucial for improving its ability to respond to emergencies and disasters. It is important that the government invest in the modernization of the BFP to ensure the safety and well-being of the Filipinos,” cited Go.
Advocating for improved access to quality healthcare services, Go, chairperson of the Senate Committee on Health and Demography, encouraged residents to utilize the services of the Malasakit Centers in the province, located at Laguna Medical Center in Sta. Cruz and San Pablo City General Hospital in San Pablo City.
The Malasakit Center, an initiative instituted through RA 11463, which Go principally authored and sponsored, consolidates the medical assistance programs of various government agencies including the Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD), Department of Health (DOH), Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PHIC), and Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).
According to DOH, more than seven million poor and indigent patients have benefitted from the 159 established Malasakit Centers nationwide.
Go, vice chairperson of the Senate Committee on Finance supported various projects to bolster economic growth and enhance public service delivery in the province. He supported the construction of multipurpose buildings in Cavinti, Liliw, Lumban, Majayjay, Pagsanjan, Pila, Sta. Cruz and Sta. Maria; construction of slaughterhouses in Mabitac, Nagcarlan and Pagsanjan; and construction of public markets in Liliw, Nagcarlan, Pagsanjan and Rizal.
Other projects he supported are the construction of a farm-to-market road and a multipurpose covered court in Paete, construction of a drainage canal in Cabuyao City, repair of the primary road inside Fort Sto. Domingo in Sta. Rosa City, and installation of street lights in Lumban and Magdalena.
“Mga kababayan ko, tandaan n’yo po, mahal na mahal ko po kayo. Minsan lang tayo dadaan sa mundong ito, kung anuman pong kabutihan o tulong na pwede natin gawin sa ating kapwa ay gawin na po natin ngayon dahil hindi na tayo babalik sa mundong ito,” he said.
“Ako ay patuloy na magseserbisyo sa inyong lahat dahil ako po ay naniniwala na ang serbisyo sa tao ay serbisyo po ‘yan sa Diyos,” concluded Go.
Image credits: Senate PRIB