ILIGAN CITY (PIA) — To strengthen the government’s efforts in its fight against the coronavirus disease (COVID-19), the 55th Engineer Brigade (55th EBde) continues to extend human resource and transportation support in areas of Lanao del Norte and Lanao del Sur.
The brigade partnered with local government units (LGU) and government agencies in Iligan City, Marawi City, Balo-i Lanao del Norte, and other parts of Lanao del Sur since the declaration of each locality’s Enhanced Community Quarantine (ECQ).
Through its different Disaster Response Task Units (DRTU), the brigade helped distribute 44,809 relief packages and 3,334 sacks of rice in the mentioned areas.
DRTU duties are closely monitored by the Disaster Response Task Group (DRTG) Commander, Col. Irineo F. Sebastian and Civil-Military Operations (CMO) Officer, Maj. Alfie T. Cabael to make sure the operations are hastened and unhampered, especially in handing over relief assistance.
Moreover, 55th EBde Commanding Officer, BGen. Nestor I. Abando assured that troops under his command will always strive to extend help needed by affected families during this trying time of COVID-19 pandemic.
“Nabigyan natin ng priority yung pagiging isa sa mga frontliners, mag-conduct ng mga checkpoints, magbigay ng mga relief goods, mag-conduct ng mga patrols natin to ensure na yung mga kababayan natin sa Marawi ay sumusunod sa mga regulasyon ng social distancing at ina-advise natin sila na huwag ng lumabas kung maaari,” BGen. Abando said.
[We prioritized being frontliners, we manned checkpoints, distributed relief goods, patrolled the areas to ensure that our countrymen in Marawi are following the regulations of social distancing. We always remind them not to go out of their houses if it isn’t necessary.]
The Brigadier General explained that the reactivation of the brigade is to help the vertical projects mandated to the troops in the rehabilitation, reconstruction, and recovery of the war-torn city of Marawi.
“Nakatali kami sa security operations and recovery of unexploded bombs sa Marawi City. However, with the advent of COVID-19, medyo nag-shift yung focus natin,” he added.
[We are tied to the security operations and recovery of unexploded bombs in Marawi City. However, with the advent of COVID-19, we temporarily shifted our focus.]
For now, troops from the 55th EBde, with its three battalions, are asking for the cooperation and patience of the families affected by both the COVID-19 crisis and the Marawi siege.
BGen. Abando guaranteed that once things will go back to normal, the brigade will carry on with the aim that was originally mandated for them. (CLV with reports for 55EBde / PIA ICIC)