Vinta leaves Lanao del Sur heaviest damage in ARMM

Iligan City, Philippines | December 24, 2017

(Photos by Taha Mangondato)

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Tropical Storm Vinta hit most the province of Lanao del Sur in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM) and as of 2 p.m. on Saturday, 12 towns in Lanao del Sur were heavily flooded with 21 reported dead and 2 missing.

ARMM has bared the following initial reports of deaths and missing residents, subject to validation by the Department of Health-ARMM, are:

* Piagapo: 10 deaths;
* Bacolod Kalawi: 2 deaths, 1 missing;
* Madalum: 4 deaths, 1 missing;
* Tamparan: 1 death;
* Tugaya: 2 deaths; and
* Wato Balindong: 2 deaths.

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In Poona Bayabao, 25 barangays were inundated, three of these barangays reported heavy damage to properties. The town’s provincial road remains impassable as of Saturday morning. 

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In Buadiposo Buntong, Town Mayor Noron Dadayan said the municipal hall submerged and the entire municipality was heavily flooded that resulted to closing of roads and highways. 

She said the local government of Buadiposo Buntong has yet to assess total damages in the municipality. 

The torrential rains triggered landslides in the towns of Tugaya, Bacolod-Kalawi, and Madalum also resulting in closure of roads. In Madalum, mounds of earth and debris covered about 200 meters of the road.

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ARMM’s Humanitarian and Emergency Action Response Team (HEART) said Wato, Balindong, Bubong, Madalum, Tugaya, Bacolod Kalawi, Madamba, Tamparan, Piagapo, Calanogas, Maguing, Poona Bayabao and Ditsaan Ramain experienced heavy flooding and landslides.

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ARMM Governor Mujiv Hataman said on Saturday that they are coordinating with local government units and disaster risk reduction management councils across the region, especially in Lanao del Sur, to assess the impact of the storm.

He said the regional government has allocated funds and is now extending various forms of assistance to individuals and families affected by floods and landslides caused by tropical storm.

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ARMM officials are also closely monitoring the situation in Basilan because of continuous heavy rain in the province. So far, reports received from the remaining provinces of the region, specifically Maguindanao, Sulu, and Tawi-Tawi, have not been as alarming.

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“Members and officials of the regional Humanitarian Emergency Action and Response Team have already been deployed,” Gov. Hataman said. Relief packs, he added, are now being distributed in areas affected by the heavy rains.

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“Challenging ang pagpasok sa Madalum for rescue and relief operations. Kailangan pa natin ng road clearance,” Gov. Hataman said.

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Since Friday night, the Department of Public Works and Highways-ARMM and Region 10 and the district engineering offices in Lanao del Sur are now clearing up the roads and bridges affected by the floods and landslides with support from the 6th Infantry Division of the Philippine Army.

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“The province of Lanao del Sur suffered the heaviest damage from the storm. We should focus on helping the province, especially just after the Marawi siege,” Hataman said. (With reports from BPI-ARMM, Taha Mangondato and other agencies)

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