“JUST pray to God it will happen to somebody else’s territory. Huwag na sa atin dito,” President Rodrigo Duterte said after visiting quake-hit Ormoc City in Leyte late Thursday afternoon to check on relief efforts.
Duterte lamented that Filipinos have “suffered enough in terms of natural and man made calamities.”
The President however assured affected local folks that government is on top of the situation.
“People are suffering,” he said.
The President said Filipinos have already accepted that the Philippines is disaster-prone especially since the country is among the world’s most vulnerable to disasters.
“Forget it. You better sleep soundly. If it’s your time, it’s your time,” Duterte said in jest.
Just over three years ago, the Visayas faced unprecedented devastation wrought by Supertyphoon Yolanda, the strongest to ever hit land.
Duterte said that government will do its best to address their needs.
“I’m satisfied with the reports and actions taken. I hope we’ve done something to show to the people that government is working,” he said.
“There is a government, a functioning one, and your money is protected and everything will be put to good use,” the President said.
At least two people died and 351 were injured after a 6.5-magnitude quake jolted Leyte on July 6. The quake displaced at least 374 people and damaged homes, public facilities and commercial buildings.
The Leyte quake is just the latest in a string of temblors that recently hit the Philippines, which sits on the so-called Ring of Fire, a vast Pacific Ocean region where earthquakes and volcanic eruptions frequently occur.
In February, a 6.5-magnitude quake killed eight people and left more than 250 injured outside the southern city of Surigao.
The following month, a 5.9-magnitude tremor killed one in the same area.