Tent cities loom for Philippine flood victims

2011-12-26 08:30

kalahari.com

  • Floods
    Everything you need to know about floods. Now R64.95
    buy now

Philippines -Tens of thousands of flash flood survivors in the Philippines face life in tent cities for months while safe areas to resettle them are sought, top relief officials said Monday.

More than 60,000 people displaced by tropical storm Washi are sheltering in government buildings in Cagayan de Oro and Iligan cities, most of them in schools that reopen after the holidays, civil defence chief Benito Ramos said.

"We can't construct permanent shelters for them immediately. It will take some time. They have to move into tents when schools reopen on January 3," Ramos told AFP.

Communities obliterated

Floods unleashed by the storm obliterated entire riverside communities on the north coast of the main southern island of Mindanao before dawn on December 17, many of them populated by poor migrants living in shacks built on sandbars.

Manila does not normally build houses for those left homeless by natural disasters, but President Benigno Aquino has banned the victims from returning to flood-prone areas, stationing armed police to enforce the measure.

Social Welfare Secretary Corazon Soliman said Philippine Army engineering units were rushing to build temporary bunkhouses and latrines in Cagayan de Oro, which accounted for half the 1,236 officially confirmed deaths.

The same would be done in Iligan once the local government finds a suitable relocation area, she added.

"The target is to have transition shelters and bunkhouses in the first two weeks of January so families can feel some personal space that they can't get at evacuation centres," she told ABS-CBN television.

But she conceded the temporary buildings would be unlikely to be able to accommodate all the displaced, so others would have to stay in tents.

'Not easy'

Ramos said finding a permanent resettlement site in Iligan would not be easy, as the area was "mainly mountainous".

He said the national government had no definite timetable for building permanent shelters, but he expects them to be ready in six months.

Local officials have reported more than 1,000 people missing, a figure that Ramos, who also supervises the corpse retrieval operation by military units, considers possibly overstated.

Many of the dead remain unidentified and unclaimed at overflowing local mortuaries.

The focus of the search has shifted to the sea, where bloated bodies lie scattered in debris-strewn Iligan Bay as well as Macajalar Bay near Cagayan de Oro.

"The search is tapering off. The problem is there could still be bodies buried under the uncollected debris in the cities," Ramos said, adding the public works ministry was repairing shattered roads and bridges while military reservists had been called up to help clear away mud and other debris.

"There's no Christmas here. It's a sad spectacle," he said.

Read more on:    philippine  |  floods
NEXT ON NEWS24X
SHARE:

Read News24’s Comments Policy

24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
0 comments
Add your comment
Comment 0 characters remaining
 

Inside News24

 
/Health
 

Tips on how to set your fitness goals

Before you embark on a fitness or training programme, set yourself clear and realistic long-term and short-term goals.

 
 

Where were you when you last felt alive?

This all-terrain vehicle is badass!
The TRUTH about painkillers and exercise
WIN! Where were you when you last felt alive?
Watch: Fishing under ice

Jobs in Cape Town [change area]

Property [change area]

Travel - Look, Book, Go!

Magical Massinga

Spend 5 nights at the gorgeous Massinga Beach Lodge in Mozambique and only pay for 4 from R13 220 per person sharing. Includes return flights, accommodation, transfers and romantic turndown. Book now!

Kalahari.com - shop online today

Deal of the week!

Save R1200 on the Samsung 48” smart full HD LED television now only R8799. Buy now!

Toys 4 for the price of 3

Buy 4 toys and get the cheapest FREE! Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Mind blowing prices – As seen on TV

Get mind blowing prices on 1000’s of products! Shop now.

Save 20% on Nivea beauty products!

Buy any two Nivea beauty products and save 20%. Offer valid while stocks last. Shop now!

Save up to R1000 on electronics!

Get mind blowing savings on top electronic products. Shop now.

OLX Free Classifieds [change area]

Samsung Galaxy s4

Mobile, Cell Phones in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 24

Best bargain in big bay

Real Estate, Houses - Apartments for Sale in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

VW Golf 6, 1.6 Trendline (Excellent condition)

Vehicles, Cars in South Africa, Western Cape, Cape Town. Date October 25

Horoscopes
Aquarius
Aquarius

You may be spending too much time organising and trying to control things to make sure everything is perfect instead of just...read more

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.
 
English
Afrikaans
isiZulu

Hello 

Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.


Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Settings

Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.








Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.