After the launching of the 15th Malasakit Center in Bicol and attending meetings with President Rodrigo Duterte, Special Assistant to the President (SAP) Christopher Lawrence “Bong” Go headed past midnight on Monday, October 15, 2018 to Marikina and Las Piñas to extend assistance to the families affected by two separate fire incidents.
A fire, of still undetermined origin broke out in Phase 1, Balubad Settlement, Brgy. Nangka, Marikina City on Oct. 13 rendered some 75 families homeless, who are currently staying at nearby Brgy. Nangka High School nearby.
Another fire in a residential area on the same day in Tropical Ave., BF Homes International, Las Piñas City affected the houses of more or less 160 families. The fire reached third-alarm status before it was considered cleared.
Go presented two possible options for the fire victims. To those who wish to go back to their home provinces, he said he will shoulder their transportation expenses. The second option is availment of housing and relocation, wherein the presidential aide will help facilitate their requests to the National Housing Authority (NHA).
“Kung gusto niyo po umuwi sa mga probinsya, ako po ang magpapamasahe sa inyo. Kung gusto niyo lang po, kasi alam ninyo, masikip na po dito sa Manila. Pero hindi ko kayo pinipilit, mas maluwag doon (To those who want to go back to their provinces, I will fund your transportation expenses. It is already crowded here in Manila. But I am not forcing you, only to those who want, because it is less crowded there),” Go said in his conversation with the affected families.
Aside from the relief assistance, Go also committed to provide uniforms for children and worker victims. His staff will also accompany the fire victims in buying new clothes.
As part of the ‘Sapatos ni SAP, Tsinelas Ka-Swap’ program, Go’s friends and supporters brought shoes to be distributed to the affected families.
In both areas, he personally exchanged his pair of rubber shoes with one of the fire victim’s who lost most of his belongings due to the incident.
In addition, Go gave his watch and jacket to a female fire victim in Las Piñas.
He also encouraged the affected individuals who are in need of medical attention to avail of the Malasakit Center.
“Mayroon tayong Malasakit Center, dito sa PGH. Kung sino ang gustong magpagamot, pwede ko kayo ipadala doon. Papasamahan ko po kayo. Libre po ito (We have a Malasakit Center in PGH [Philippine General Hospital]. To those who are in need of medical attention, you may go there. I will ask my staff to accompany you. This is free of charge),” Go said.
The Malasakit Center is a one-stop shop program of President Duterte which seeks to hasten the delivery of medical services and give poor patients access to free medicine. A fast lane prioritizing the senior citizens and persons with disabilities (PWDs) will also be available.
Go said the government plans to launch more Malasakit Centers nationwide to make free quality healthcare more accessible to all Filipinos.