Vice President Leni Robredo backed calls to investigate the unprecedented flooding in Cagayan and said  there was definitely an oversight which led to loss of lives and properties.

000 8V79QE 1024x683 - Leni backs probe of Cagayan flood
This handout aerial photo taken and received on November 14, 2020 from the Philippine Coast Guard shows residents sheltering on the roof of their flooded house in Cagayan province, north of Manila, on November 14, 2020. (Photo by Handout / Philippine Coast Guard / AFP / MANILA BULLETIN)

 Robredo  said that it is necessary to look into what caused the flooding even if it was a result of a “confluence of many factors.” She added that an investigation is “very necessary to prevent it from happening again.”

Infrawatch PH said that the decision of some government agencies to discharge water from several dams which triggered massive flooding in Luzon can be considered “criminal incompetence.”

While Robredo agreed that “it was definitely an oversight,” she noted that “who committed the oversight” remains a question. “I do not have data to say (who committed it) but there was definitely an oversight because this should have been anticipated already.”

 Considering the recent typhoons before “Ulysses” such as “Quinta” and “Rolly,” Robredo said that there should have been more preparations. “I was asking, were we able to estimate the amount of rainfall or were they warned enough that there was really danger of having floods of this magnitude?”

 Robredo said that an investigation is really necessary to answer all the lingering questions surrounding the tragic flooding in Cagayan and other parts of Luzon. “If we wouldn’t have a formal investigation, the danger that it will happen again, sooner or later, is really there,” she added.

 Robredo has been coordinating with concerned agencies to hold rescue operations for residents in Marikina City and Rizal stranded by Ulysses. She visited these areas last week to provide relief assistance to affected communities.

She visited Cagayan and Isabela last Sunday.

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