Maguindanao floods affect 13,000 families, destroy P27M crops

COTABATO CITY (MindaNews/21 June)—At least 13,000 families were affected and nearly P27 million worth of agricultural crops were damaged by the floods that hit 13 towns in Maguindanao in the past few days, reports from two government agencies showed.

Undersecretary Alexander Pama, executive director of the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Center, said in a report as of 9:26 p.m. Friday that persistent rains and the accumulation of water hyacinths in the Tamontaka River and the Rio Grande de Mindanao caused the flooding affecting 91 barangays in the 13 towns.

“Bridges and roads are still passable while electricity and water supplies are still normal,” he said.

Quoting lawyer Laisa Alamia, ARMM executive secretary, Myrna Jo Henry, of the ARMM’s Humanitarian Emergency Action and Response Team (ARMM HEART), said the floods destroyed rice, corn and vegetables in 10 affected towns worth around P27 million.

Workers of ARMM HEART, which Alamia also heads, met Friday with officials of the ARMM’s Department of Agriculture and Fisheries to assess the damage to agriculture.

Alamia said they “have not received official reports of evacuations” due to the floods, adding that they are still validating media reports that there were displacements.

The 13 flood-affected towns are Mamasapano, Shariff Saydona, Datu Salibo, Datu Piang, Rajah Buayan, Mother Kabuntalan, Northern Kabuntalan, Ampatuan, Datu Odin Sinsuat, Datu Montawal, Pagalungan, Datu Abdullah Sangki and Sultan sa Barongis.

ARMM HEART personnel were set to go to Mother Kabuntalan town today to distribute food packs and medicines to the flood-affected residents.

Heavy rains poured gain over Maguindanao and neighboring provinces on Saturday morning.

Based on the 5 a.m. Saturday advisory of the Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical and Astronomical Services Administration, Mindanao will experience light to moderate rainshowers and thunderstorms due to the southwest monsoon. (MindaNews)