Almost 7,000 dead, missing

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The death toll from super typhoon Yolanda continues to climb, reaching 5,235 as of Saturday, two weeks after the powerful howler flattened entire towns in several provinces.

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The number of casualties surpassed the 5,100 deaths recorded during the flashflood that rampaged through communities in Ormoc City in Leyte province in 1990.

The National Disaster Risk Reduction Management Council (Ndrrmc) said 1,613 people remain missing.

In Tacloban, the capital of Leyte province, 1,727 people have been confirmed dead. Another 451 remain missing.

The typhoon has triggered a giant, international aid effort, with dozens of countries and relief organizations rushing to deliver food, water and health services to more than four million people who lost their homes.

However, United Nations (UN) humanitarian chief Valerie Amos warned that the world was still not responding fast enough.

“Much more needs to be done. Food, clean water and shelter remain the top priorities,” Amos said as a UN appeal for funds was raised from $301 million to $348 million.

In the coastal city of Tacloban, survivors continued to complain about a lack of help.

“There is no steady supply of relief goods. It comes in trickles,” said Maribel Senase, 41, as she held a baby and her husband sawed wood near their shattered home.

Senase, who has four children, said her family had received rice, dried fish and sardines, but they remained hungry.

The World Bank on Friday added $480 million in emergency aid to the Philippines, taking its support to nearly $1 billion, in an effort to spur efforts to rebuild homes and infrastructure.

The Asian Development Bank also last week offered $500 million concessionary loans.

The United States military has performed the highest-profile role in the relief effort, sending an aircraft carrier that arrived six days after the disaster which finally allowed relief supplies to start reaching isolated communities.

Japan also sent more than 1,000 troops aboard three vessels that arrived on Thursday night, in what is the biggest overseas deployment of the country’s military since its defeat in World War II nearly 70 years ago.

China, which is embroiled in a long-running territorial dispute with the Philippines, dispatched a 300-bed hospital ship, while Australia, Britain and Indonesia are among many other nations to have also sent military support.

Anthony Vargas, AFP

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2 Comments

  1. The denial President should resign if the death toll reaches 10,000. He said he would. In the name of honor he should admit the incompetence of his government and set a straightforward conveyance of true facts to those whom he has declared are his masters, his bosses, the Filipino people who have been the victims of the administration’s lies. Mahiya siya at kanyang mga galamay sa Diyos!!!!!

    • The Philippines to this date has 3 C130s, about 14 helicopters and 2 reliable frigates (as battleships) and several WW-II vintage other naval vessels (4) and about seven or nine coast guard boats.

      The 3 C130s were put to operational condition, the six (6) helicopters and the two frigates were purchased when BSAquino became the president.

      The US Navy came in with 9 C130s, 26 helicopters and about 14 naval ships altogether. There are other types of aircrafts being put to use around 15 more of them.

      Making comparison, the entire Philippine government is not capable to do the job on its own no matter who the current president is because of lack of means due to neglect God knows since when.

      Can you understand that Mr Dan Joseph?

      Why do you think is the Philippine government lacking assets needed in dealing with national disasters like these (to include the Bohol earthquake, the Zamboanga rebellion and similarly devastating typhoons and floods in the past years?

      I just thought it might help to put the issues in proper perspectives, instead of just making posts without second thoughts about them.