Funds for NorthCot flood victims readied for release

Gov. Jesus Sacdalan said he will urge the Sangguniang Panlungsod to release the funds immediately. “The need is immediate. Our response should be immediate,” he said over radio station dxND. 

The floods affected the towns of Carmen, Kabacan, Pikit, President Roxas, and Magpet and caused the death of six persons. Rescuers have yet to recover the three bodies of those who drowned in the Kabacan River when it overflowed.

A total of 572 families in Carmen town, especially those residing near the Malmar irrigation dam, had to leave their homes when flood waters rose to as much as 10 feet, residents said.

The governor said another 82 families living near the marsh in Kabacan also evacuated.

Sammy Ampuan, a teacher at the Gocotan Elementary School in Pikit, said they had to suspend classes for two days when flood waters inundated classrooms.

Sacdalan said another P8 million from Malacañang will be released soon to construct a concrete flood control dike. The money is was part of the P20-million the President promised for the completion of the control dike in North Cotabato.

The temporary dike constructed in 2000 was totally damaged last Monday with the rampaging flood waters from the Kabacan River, one of the biggest rivers in the province.

The recent floods took many residents by surprise.

“We used to stay in our house even if the rains were heavy. So last Monday, we decided to stay inside our house,” said Ronilo Calayco, of Barangay Idaoman in President Roxas town.

“But when we saw floodwaters coming from all directions, we had to run,” he said. But his wife Merlyn and daughter Jinky, 17, had no chance when they were swept by the flood waters from the Idaoman River. (Malu Cadeliña Manar / MindaNews)