COTABATO CITY – Four women drowned in floodwaters that swept through more than a dozen villages in low-lying areas in Basilan early this week, officials said yesterday.
The Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (RDRRMC) in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao identified the victims as Helen Ignacio, Tessie Samson, and Flordeliza and Judy Anne, both surnamed Sebastian, all of Barangay Bohe Yakan in Lamitan City.
More than 900 families in Baluno district at the border of Lamitan City and Isabela town were evacuated by the Army’s Special Forces when rivers crisscrossing the area overflowed.
Lamitan City Vice Mayor Roderick Furigay told The STAR that the four women were swept away by rampaging waters from a river straddling Bohe Yakan, and their bodies were recovered late Friday.
Flashfloods also hit more than a dozen other communities in surrounding barangays, Furigay said.
ARMM Executive Secretary Laisa Alamia said the region’s Humanitarian Emergency Assistance and Response Team initially distributed to flood victims in Lamitan 1,500 relief packs, containing food and hygiene kits from the Australian Agency for International Development.
The RDRRMC-ARMM said the flashfloods displaced 11,649 families, or a total of 58,845 people. – John Unson