FOUR years after Supertyphoon “Yolanda” devastated the Visayas regions, thousands of survivors in the provinces of Antique continue to suffer from flooding as a result of the unfinished rehabilitation site, a priest in the area said on Sunday.
Fr. Jose Elmer Cajilig, Region 6 lead convenor and Visayas co-convenor of the pro-Duterte group Kilusang Pagbabago (KP), said the floods have devastated hectares of rice fields in the villages of Puho, Hatay-Hatay, Calog, Lacayon and Cubay in South Bugasong town as he appealed to the government to prioritize the Yolanda survivors.
About 1,781 houses were being built for Yolanda victims on the site.
“The flooding is caused by a covered creek on the relocation site. Water seeks its own level and everytime it rains, sand and other debris are carried by flood waters into the rice fields of the hapless farmers,” Cajilig told The Manila Times in a phone interview.
Cajilig said the affected farmers have brought the matter to the attention of the Office of the Presidential Assistant for the Visayas (OPAV) Michael Lloyd Dino who has not acted to address the problem, which he even branded as “fake news.”
“We are sad that situations like these affecting our poor farmers are brushed aside as fake news. I have personally visited the site and we have pictures and videos to prove that they are for real,” the priest added.
Yolanda is considered the strongest typhoon in recent history to hit land, devastating parts of the Visayas, killing thousands and destroying millions of pesos worth of property and infrastructure on November 2013. WILLIAM B. DEPASUPIL