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Helping flood victims instead of partying for Christmas

Several government departments and private companies have cancelled their Christmas parties saying the funds would be used to help the victims of the floods caused by more than 40 days of rainfall in October and November. The announcement affects musical performers and their bands during the Christmas season, usually their busiest and most lucrative time of year.

Channel 5 (Telemicro) has already announced the suspension of its Christmas party and the new year concert on the Malecon on 31 December.

Merengueros Siglo XXI, led by merengue bandleader Johnny Ventura, expressed his solidarity: “While Christmas partying is a tradition that brings joy to everyone every year, and represents major revenue for the merengue bands, it is a time for putting aside celebrations and thinking of ways of helping these people who have lost everything or almost everything,” he said. He said he trusted the government would know when the time was right to bring back the beloved parties to the people. He said that right now we needed to join forces, prayers and resources to help the victims of the floods in the Cibao and other affected areas. He announced that his “Solo Merengue” concert would be postponed until 29 January 2017. It was originally scheduled for 26 November, National Merengue Day.

Meanwhile, the Ministry of Defense announced the suspension of Christmas festivities at all military institutions nationwide due to the emergency situation in many Cibao provinces. Other government bodies, including the General Controller Office, the Ministry of Women, the Ministry of Agriculture and OISOE also announced they were suspending their Christmas parties. Presidency spokesman Roberto Rodríguez Marchena said that nobody in government was thinking about parties, and that the priority for government officials was to assist the flood victims.

According to the Emergency Operations Center (COE), a total of 15 people have died in the torrential rains that have been affecting the country for the past four weeks. The COE’s Tuesday, 29 November 2016 bulletin reports that some 20,000 people have been displaced from their homes and that 16 provinces are still on weather alert.

Officially, the 2016 Hurricane Season ends on 30 November. While the Dominican Republic was not affected by a hurricane this season, the start of year drought was replaced by two months in which all the rain that hadn’t fallen during the winter, spring, and summer months came down in October and November as the country was affected by a series of consecutive weather systems.

Source: DR1

Nov 30, 2016

Category: DR News |

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Last updated February 26, 2017 at 10:12 PM
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