Farmer, horse drown in flood

The body of Ferdinand Fernandez, 59, of Barangay Singao, was discovered in the riverbank of Barangay Ugpay, some 200 kilometers west of this city, around 2 p.m., Wednesday. The victim sustained injuries in different parts of his body.

Fernandez’ horse had been found five hours earlier in the riverbank of barangay Kalaisan. From there the rescuers followed a trail that led them to his body.

Alejandro Erasan, a farmer from Barangay Magsaysay, said that he and other persons convinced him not to cross the river due to rainstorm.

“Yet, he insisted in going home. We never thought he could not make it,” said Erasan.

Heavy rains since Monday caused Nuangan River, the longest river in North Cotabato, to overflow and inundate low-lying villages of Magsaysay, Singao, and Kalaisan.

Erasan said they went to higher grounds when they saw the flash floods coming. He estimated the waters in Nuangan River to have reached as high as 10 feet.

Last week, the Cotabato Provincial Government declared the province as under a “state of calamity” after heavy rains swamped more than 8,500 hectares of agricultural lands in at least five towns in the first district.

The floods affected some 900 families.

The Department of Agriculture said crop damage could run into several millions. (MindaNews)