Cotabato City (July 2, 2015) – More than 15,000 families in Maguindanao have been adversely affected by flood caused by continuous heavy rainfall these past days.
In a joint report of the region’s Office of Civil Defense (OCD) and the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao-Humanitarian Emergency Action Response Team (ARMM-HEART), flooding has been observed in 68 barangays affecting 15,099 families, or 75,495 individuals, in 10 towns in Maguindanao.
The affected towns are Ampatuan, Datu Salibo, Rajah Buayan, Shariff Saydona Mustapha, Buluan, Mangudadatu, Pandag, Datu Paglas, Datu Abdullah Sangki and Sultan Sa Barongis, which suffered most with 2,913 families, or 14,565 individuals, affected or displaced. On June 30, the town declared a state of calamity.
The flooding also disrupted classes in 23 public schools affecting 8,111 elementary and secondary students and 178 teachers. Around 487 hectares of farmland were also damaged with losses amounting to at least P10 million.
As part of its relief assistance, the ARMM-HEART distributed on Thursday, July 2, food packs, school supplies, and hygiene kits to the affected families in Sultan Sa Barongis. OCD-ARMM augmented the assistance by donating1,635 pieces of slippers and 2,000 pieces of pails and dippers.
Atty. Kirby Abdullah, ARMM-HEART focal person, said the same assistance will also be extended to other affected municipalities. “Tuloy-tuloy ang tulong natin sa mga apektado ng pagbaha hanggang kailangan (Our assistance will continue in areas affected by the floods as long as such assistance is needed),” said Atty. Abdullah.
He said the agency’s operating fund and the region’s calamity fund will cover the necessary expenses for the relief operation. Based on area from the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration (PAGASA), the downpours experienced in Maguindanao since June 24 were due to an Inter Tropical Convergence Zone.
PAGASA said that moderate to heavy rains in the region and in other parts of Mindanao will continue due to a tropical depression expected to enter the Philippine area of responsibility by next week. (Bureau of Public Information)