Relocation eyed for flood victims in Darong

DAVAO CITY (MindaNews/24 January) — Families displaced by the recent flashfloods in Barangay Darong, Sta. Cruz town in Davao del Sur will soon be relocated in the upland areas of the village to avert more damages and casualties in the future, the municipal mayor said.

“The relocation should be made as soon as possible to immediately house the homeless victims in a safer place. Hopefully, we could relocate them within this month or next month,” said Mayor Joel Ray L. Lopez.

The total estimated cost of the damaged houses was pegged at P850 million.

The flashflood also drowned Marieto Cadorna and two children, Ellen Mae Iligan, and Oshelyn Navia.

Lopez said the area where hundreds of families were rendered homeless after days of heavy rains was identified as a “danger zone.” He said it would be safer for the residents to be placed on higher grounds.

He said they are currently planning to put up a two-hectare relocation site near the Ayala property in Darong. He added the municipality would also welcome land donors to help it reduce its expenses in acquiring a lot.

At least 30 percent of the town’s annual calamity fund of P7,939,700 will be allocated for the relief and rehabilitation of the flood victims.

The report of the Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council said 810 families or 4,050 individuals lost their homes to the Jan. 17 flashfloods. It further cited that 391 houses were destroyed 112 of which were considered “totally damaged”.

At least 443 displaced families are currently sheltered in at least 10 evacuation centers in Sta. Cruz as well as in Davao City.

The other families displaced by the floods are staying with relatives and friends. (MindaNews)