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PNoy on top of situation as ‘Lando’ batters PH

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President Benigno Aquino III continues to monitor development of Typhoon Lando (international name Koppu) as it lingers over Luzon bringing heavy rains and powerful winds.

“Nagmomonitor po ang ating Pangulo at up-to-date naman po siya dahil sa periodic reporting ng NDRRMC (National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council),” Presidential Communications Secretary Herminio Coloma said Sunday on state-run DZRB radio.

He noted that all concerned government agencies through their respective Cabinet officials have been giving regular updates to the Chief Executive.

Asked if there is a need for Aquino to preside over a meeting at the NDRRMC, Coloma said a situation room has been set up in Malacañang where the President can gather his Cabinet if necessary.

“Wala pong pagpapahinga sa bahagi ng ating pambansang pamahalaan sa pangunguna ni Pangulong Aquino sa pagtutok sa sitwasyong kinakaharap natin sa kasalukuyan dahil nga po sa kahalagahan ‘nung ating layunin na zero casualty,” the Palace official said.

Key disaster officials such as Defense Secretary Voltaire Gazmin, Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman, NDRRMC executive director Alexander Pama, Public Works Secretary Rogelio Singson, military and police officials, among others, have been conducting regular meetings at the NDRRMC office to monitor the progress and effects of the typhoon.

No casualty has been reported so far since the Typhoon Lando made its landfall in the town of Casiguran, Aurora Province early Sunday.

Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA) reported that the typhoon has slightly weakened as it made its first landfall now with maximum sustained winds of 150 kilometers per hour (kph) near the center with gusts of up to 185 kph.

Public storm warning signal number 4, which was earlier raised over Aurora Province, has been lowered.

Signal number 3 is hoisted over Aurora, Quirino, Nueva Vizcaya, Nueva Ecija, Benguet, Ifugao, Mountain Province, Kalinga, La Union and Pangasinan.

Areas under signal number 2 include Cagayan, Isabela, Abra, Apayao, Ilocos Norte, Ilocos Sur, Zambales, Bataan, Tarlac, Pampanga, Bulacan, Rizal, Northern Quezon and Polilio Islands, Metro Manila.

Signal number 1 is raised over Batanes, Cavite, Laguna, Batangas and rest of Quezon.

The state weather bureau said the typhoon is expected to linger over northern parts of Luzon until Friday.

PAGASA advised residents in affected areas to remain vigilant and stay in safe areas despite the weakening of the typhoon noting that it will still cause heavy rains that may lead to flooding and landslides.

Coloma asked the public to continue to monitor advisories and news reports being posted in social media as well as government websites such as the Philippine Information Agency, Philippine News Agency and the Official Gazette.