Ilocos state U reports P86-M loss due to ‘Ompong’

BATAC CITY— The Mariano Marcos State University (MMSU) has reported PHP86-million in damage due to the recent onslaught of Typhoon “Ompong” (Mangkhut).

The sustained damage, according to Engr. Romeo R. Duldulao, Director of MMSU’s Physical Plant and General Services Division (PPGSD), were mostly on buildings, electrical posts, internet lines, water system, agribusiness, livestock and poultry, and crops.

In the main campus, the university’s accommodation facilities suffered the most with a reported damage worth PHP13 million. These facilities include student dormitories, hostel, function hall, university mansion, and the Teatro Ilocandia. This was followed by the Communication Arts building and classrooms worth PHP7 million each, and the College of Agriculture, Food and Sustainable Development CAFSD) with PHP6 million in damages.

“Despite the damages, classes would not be affected. So now, we are trying our best to restore the most important university facilities for smooth flow of classes,” Duldulao said.

Meanwhile, the Commission on Higher Education (CHED) has assured MMSU and the other five SUCs in Region 1 of assistance in rehabilitating their school buildings and facilities.

Citing data from the preliminary damage assessment report on SUCs affected by typhoon Ompong, CHED Officer-in-Charge and Spokesperson Prospero De Vera III noted that the damage sustained by the six SUCs would amount to more than PHP193 million.

Aside from MMSU, other SUCs in Ilocos Region with reported damages were the Don Mariano Marcos Memorial State University in La Union pegged at PHP42 million; North Luzon Philippines State College in Candon City, Ilocos Sur at PHP702,800; University of Northern Philippines in Vigan City, PHP9.9 million; Pangasinan State University,PHP85 million; and Ilocos Sur Polytechnic State College, PHP54 million.

De Vera said he is also looking into other possible sources of funds and assistance to help the affected SUCs. This may include seeking assistance from non-government organizations (NGOs) as well as private groups and companies to help repair schools and facilities, especially in public HEIs with limited resources.

De Vera said despite the reported damages in some SUCs, the academic calendar would not be affected.

“We are in constant communication with university officials, and they have indicated that the classes won’t be affected,” he said, adding that the CHED has already submitted its report to the National Disaster Risk and Reduction Management Council.