Typhoon Pepeng's (Parma) aftermath may not be as devastating as that of Typhoon Ondoy's on human lives because of the precautionary measures being done by the government in cooperation with other organizations and the people themselves. Areas in Metro Manila previously ravaged by typhoon Ondoy were luckily spared from the rage of typhoon Pepeng.

As of 5:00AM of October 5, PAGASA issued an update declaring that typhoon Pepeng (Parma) is moving west slowly. Public Storm Signal elsewhere has been lowered. But according to PAGASA chief weather forecaster Nathaniel Cruz, although typhoon Pepeng has weakened, the rains it spread over the mountains of northern Luzon while it was in the area could still trigger flooding and landslides in the coming days.

One of the greatest factors which contributed to the overflowing of water around Metro Manila was the narrowing of canals and other waterways due to illegal housings built by illegal settlers. President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo had already ordered the permanent relocation of thousands of families living near Marikina City riverbanks and other high-risk areas in Metro Manila.

Local officials had expressed opposition to the President's proposed permanent relocation of residents living in critical areas. One reason might be lose of voters, according to Press Sec. Remonde.
“But I think that (loss of voters) is the least of our concerns... and this is, of course, a very good opportunity to clean up our esteros and waterways,” Remonde told reporters on Friday.

“Actually, the presence of our countrymen in these areas are not only endangering themselves but affecting the flow of esteros,” he said.
I think President Arroyo is right in her decision to permanently relocate these people because evacuating those living near waterways and esteros has been the recurring problem every monsoon season. The calamity fund intended for the relief and rescue operations might as well be used to relocate them to a much safer place, preventing any more loss of lives in the coming years.

As Sec. Remonde said, this will also be a good opportunity to clean up and even restore our rivers and other waterways.