The “emotional breakdown” by the Philippines’ lead negotiator in the United Nations’ conference on climate change in Doha in Qatar is understandable, Malacañang said Saturday.
Deputy presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte said negotiator Naderev Saño’s emotional response came amid the Philippine delegation’s push for action on climate change.
“We understand the sentiments of the chief negotiator,” she said on government-run dzRB radio, adding that the entire Philippine delegation “is pushing for action when it comes to climate change.”
She said the Palace expects the delegation to give a briefing on the initiatives the Philippines pushed in the conference.
Valte said the delegation is due to return home to the Philippines Saturday night and may give a briefing on Monday or Tuesday.
A report on National Public Radio had said Saño delivered an emotional plea for action on climate change, citing the destruction caused by Typhoon Pablo (Bopha).
“As we sit here in these negotiations, even as we vacillate and procrastinate here, the death toll is rising ... There is massive and widespread devastation,” Saño said.
He also appealed to world leaders to “open our eyes to the stark reality that we face.”
“I appeal to all, please, no more delays, no more excuses. Please, let Doha be remembered as the place where we found the political will to turn things around. Please, let 2012 be remembered as the year the world found the courage to find the will to take responsibility for the future we want. I ask of all of us here, if not us, then who? If not now, then when? If not here, then where?” he was quoted in the report as saying.
The National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council had said that as of Saturday morning, Typhoon Pablo left at least 456 dead and P4 billion in damage.
Before noon Saturday, Pablo remained a threat to the Philippines as it moved close to Northern Luzon, prompting state weather forecasters to place four areas under Storm Signal No. 1. - VVP, GMA News
December 08, 2012