Floods submerge 13 villages in Maguindanao

By Edwin O. Fernandez

SHARIFF AGUAK, Maguindanao, (PNA) — Thirteen villages here were submerged by flood waters spawned by heavy down pour Saturday night, dislocating hundreds of villagers, officials said.

The flash floods also hit the town center when the Allah River overflowed and water level of Liguasan marshland rose following the overnight rain.

Hundreds of residents in affected barangays were forced to evacuate to higher grounds and temporarily sought shelter at village centers and public schools, according to Shariff Aguak Mayor Zahara Upam-Ampatuan.

She said the local government unit has not fully attended the needs of displaced families due to lack of funds. The municipal disaster office had limited funds due to previous floods that affected Shariff Aguak,.

Ampatuan has sought the help of Maguindanao Governor Esmael Mangudadatu and Governor Mujiv Hataman of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (ARMM).

The displaced families are yet to recover from floods that hit their villages in August.

Floods last month triggered by two low pressure areas in Mindanao displaced close to 250,000 persons in Maguindanao’s 20 municipalities.

Maguindanao had been placed under state of calamity in August due to floods after the provincial board passed a resolution putting the entire province under state of calamity.

Among the damaged infrastructure last month was the riprap project along Pulangi River near Tunggol Bridge in Datu Montawal and water hyacinths clogged portions of the along Rio Grande de Mindanao.

The floods also submerged 185 villages affecting 49,615 families or 247,423 pesons in 20 towns, according to the Regional Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council.