TACLOBAN CITY — President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. will lead on Wednesday, Nov. 8, the 10th anniversary of the onslaught of Supertyphoon Yolanda (international name: Haiyan).
The President will arrive in this city about 10 a.m. and proceed to the Tacloban City Convention Center (Astrodome), which used to be the biggest temporary shelter of survivors.
He will be accompanied by House Speaker and Leyte congressman Martin Romualdez and welcomed by local officials led by City Mayor Alfred Romualdez.
In last year’s anniversary, the President graced the event held at the mass grave in Barangay Basper, where more than 2,200 people, who perished during the supertyphoon, were buried.
This year, the President will also lead the distribution of titles to Yolanda survivors who availed themselves of the national government’s housing project.
In the afternoon, a thanksgiving Mass will be held at the mass grave at the Holy Cross Memorial Park in Barangay Basper.
A solemn candlelight ceremony in every street in the city will mark the end of the commemorative program.
More than 6,000 people, of which over 2,200 are from Tacloban alone, died when Yolanda wrecked havoc in Eastern Visayas.
Ma. Lumen Tabao, city tourism officer, said unlike previous commemorations, this year will focus more on “thanksgiving.”
“It’s been 10 years now. What we will be observing is a thanksgiving, especially to those who extended assistance to us like various international non-government organizations that helped us recover fast from devastation,” she said.
“This is our way of saying thank you to them. After 10 years, we celebrate a new lease of life, especially after the pandemic that we all experienced,” Tabao said, referring to the COVID-19.
Members of 28 “climate walkers” arrived in the city on Wednesday morning to show their solidarity with typhoon survivors.
“This is a journey for climate justice because those who contribute the least to this problem of climate change crisis like the Philippines and the people of Eastern Visayas are experiencing the most severe impacts of the problem,” Yeb Saño, lead walker and executive director of the Greenpeace Southeast Asia, said in an interview.
Experts and environmentalists claimed that Yolanda was an induced climate change typhoon.
He said one of the positive things that resulted from the devastation of Yolanda was the clamor to fight climate change.
“The clamor for climate justice has become much stronger, especially with the rise of the youth movement with all of the climate justice litigation in the rest of the world where rich countries, as well as big corporations, are being held accountable and responsible for damaging the environment and the planet,” Saño said.
The climate walker started their walk on Oct. 8 at Rizal Park in Manila and ended at the kilometer zero in this city located at the old provincial capitol along Magsaysay Boulevard, covering 1,000 kms.