Palace still hopeful as search for Robredo, pilots continues

The government remains hopeful that Interior and Local Government Secretary Jesse Robredo and two pilots, whose plane crashed off the island of Masbate late Saturday, will still be found alive, as it noted that aircraft and divers continue to search for the victims as of Monday afternoon.

"We are still in search and rescue," Transportation Secretary Manuel "Mar" Roxas said in a 2 p.m. press briefing broadcast over dzBB radio.

"Lahat ng hanay ng gobyerno, national, local, tulong-tulong para dito (All government agencies at the national and local level are helping in this effort)," Roxas said.

He added that divers are concentrating on the site where the flight manifest, the last physical evidence of the crash, had been found.

Surface search operations are also ongoing, Roxas said, even as he noted that two sorties deployed earlier on Monday returned with negative reports on sightings.

"May isa pa pong sortie ang Philippine Navy at papasimula pa po lamang ito (Another sortie led by the Philippine Navy has also been launched)," Roxas said, adding that a fourth sortie will also be sent out late Monday.

A special deep-diving volunteer group, which went underwater at about 1 p.m., reported a "dispersed debris field" 180 to 210 feet deep at roughly 2.5 kilometers from shore, Roxas said. He said debris in the area reportedly included metal pieces and what could have been parts of the plane cockpit's fiber glass.

This was confirmed by a four-man team of technical divers from the Philippine Navy, Roxas said.

He added that officials are currently studying underwater footage to determine the next stage of the diving search operations.

"Volunteer divers are in good coordination with authorities leading the search and rescue operations," he added.

Meanwhile, the Philippine Navy, Philippine Coast Guard, and Philippine National Police are leading the surface search alongside local fishing boats.

Three sonar equipment are currently being used to locate debris underwater, Roxas noted, adding that the U.S. has also offered a remote-operated vehicle to search depths beyond 250 feet.

A debris believed to be part of its plane's right wing had been found about one kilometer away from the Masbate shoreline on Sunday.

President Benigno Aquino III, who flew in Sunday morning to oversee the operations, left Masbate City at about 3:40 p.m. Monday.

Before flying to Manila, the President dropped by Naga City to brief Robredo's wife Leny on the ongoing search and rescue operations, Roxas said.

He declined to provide details on what Aquino discussed with the Robredos, however.

"Wag po tayong mag-speculate. Gusto lamang pong makausap ng ating pangulo si Mrs. Robredo (Let us not speculate. The President only wished to personally speak with Mrs. Robredo)," Roxas said.

In a separate press briefing at the sidelines of the ongoing vigil for Robredo at the La Salle Greenhills in Mandaluyong City, Presidential Spokesperson Edwin Lacierda assured the public that the President is not abandoning his official duties.

An officer in-charge for the Department of Interior and Local government has meanwhile yet to be appointed, Lacierda said.

"We assure the public that the normal operations of the DILG, and its attached agencies, continue, and are unhampered by the ongoing rescue effort," Lacierda said in a statement.

This, even as he noted that the search and rescue operations for Robredo and his companions remain the priority of the DILG and other related agencies.

Lacierda added the President will be making further announcements concerning the Department "at the proper time."

Loading...

Editor’s note:Yahoo Philippines encourages responsible comments that add dimension to the discussion. No bashing or hate speech, please. You can express your opinion without slamming others or making derogatory remarks.

  • US renews travel warning to Mindanao
    US renews travel warning to Mindanao

    The US State Department renewed its warning about the risks of travel to the Philippines, in particular to the Sulu archipelago, certain regions and cities of Mindanao and the southern Sulu Sea area. In an update on Wednesday of a travel warning it issued Nov. 20, 2014, the State Department said US citizens should continue to defer non-essential travel to the Sulu archipelago due to the high threat of kidnapping of international travelers and violence linked to insurgency and terrorism there. …

  • Phl gains support for APEC Action Agenda
    Phl gains support for APEC Action Agenda

    The Philippine initiative to put the interests of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs) front and center in global and regional trade has made significant progress following the conclusion on Thursday of the 2nd APEC Senior Officials’ Meeting (SOM2) and Related Meetings in Boracay, Aklan. Called “The Boracay Action Agenda to Globalize MSMEs,” the Philippine proposal calls for a host of specific, concrete and practical interventions that APEC economies can implement to provide MSMEs wider …

  • Phl to join Bangkok meet on Rohingya crisis next week
    Phl to join Bangkok meet on Rohingya crisis next week

    The Philippines will join a 15-nation meeting in Bangkok, Thailand next week to address the migration crisis involving thousands of Rohingyas who escaped persecution in Myanmar and Bangladesh. Justice Secretary Leila de Lima bared this yesterday after meeting with United Nations High Commission for Refugees (UNHCR) representative to the Philippines Bernard Kerblat. In an interview, De Lima said the Philippine government has been invited to the meeting. …

  • Magnitude 4.2 quake jolts Sorsogon
    Magnitude 4.2 quake jolts Sorsogon

    LEGAZPI CITY—A magnitude 4.2 earthquake hit Prieto Diaz town in Sorsogon before dawn yesterday, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) said. …

  • Drought-resistant rice breeds bared
    Drought-resistant rice breeds bared

    SCIENCE CITY OF MUÑOZ, Nueva Ecija – Amid the searing heat, the Philippine Rice Research Institute central experiment station here has identified nine rice breeds which have been proven to be drought-resistant and produce high yields in temperatures as high as 38°C based on a recent study. Thelma Padolina, lead researcher of the study titled “Screening of rice-induced mutants for heat and drought tolerance,” identified the breeding lines as the Ballatinaw lines, PSB Rc72H and Azucena lines. …

  • Phl, US assert rights, ignore China warning
    Phl, US assert rights, ignore China warning

    The United States military will continue air and sea patrols in international waters even after the Chinese navy repeatedly warned a US surveillance plane to leave the airspace over artificial islands China is creating in the disputed South China Sea. The Philippine government also declared it would continue activities in the region, calling on China to respect freedom of navigation and aviation. “Our position on the importance of letting freedom of navigation, freedom of aviation and …

  • MM shutdown eyed for quake drill; 6 schools warned
    MM shutdown eyed for quake drill; 6 schools warned

    Electricity and mobile phone services would be cut throughout Metro Manila, and all private and government offices and businesses, including shopping malls, would be closed. That would be the situation on July 16 between 3 and 8 p.m. to simulate the scenario of a 7.2 magnitude earthquake. The Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) has warned that an earthquake of that magnitude could occur and kill at least 33,500 people and injure at least 113,600 others following a …

  • Subaru XV now priced among sedans
    Subaru XV now priced among sedans

    Motor Image Philipinas (MIP), the authorized distributor of Subaru in the country, has positioned its brand new crossover SUV, the Subaru XV, well within the sedan segment’s price range. This move, according to MIP, was made to give the public an opportunity to experience the brand’s unique automotive technologies by lowering its price. Buyers of […] The post Subaru XV now priced among sedans appeared first on Carmudi Philippines. …

POLL

Should Aquino be held accountable over the Mamasapano operations?

Loading...
Poll Choice Options