2 kids missing, houses damaged by floods in BARMM towns

John Unson - Philstar.com
2 kids missing, houses damaged by floods in BARMM towns
Policemen and villagers struggle to remove a light truck that got stuck in the middle of a highway in Balabagan amid Tuesday night’s flash floods that left the thoroughfare covered with thick mud.
Philstar.com / John Unson

COTABATO CITY, Philippines — Two children were reportedly swept away by a rampaging flood that hit more than a dozen predominantly Moro villages in Matanog, Maguindanao del Norte and in Balabagan, Lanao del Sur on Tuesday night following torrential rains in mountain ranges around several hours before.

Brig. Gen. Prexy Tanggawohn, director of the Police Regional Office-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region, told reporters on Wednesday morning that municipal police forces have joined local government responders in their search for the siblings Sheila and Ela Abdullah, whose house in Barangay Molimok in Balabagan was reportedly destroyed by rampaging floodwaters.

More than a hundred houses made of semi-permanent materials in the adjoining Balabagan and Matanog towns were reportedly damaged by the floods, spawned by recurring heavy downpours that started early Tuesday.

Local executives dispatched on Wednesday the personnel of their Municipal Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office to assess the damages to property and crops that the floods had caused and to extend initial relief support for the flood-stricken villagers.

Units of the Philippine Navy’s 1st Marine Brigade in the two towns had also been mobilized to support the rescue and relief missions of the Balabagan and Matanog local government units, the provincial governments of Lanao del Sur and Maguindanao del Norte and the Ministry of Social Services and Development-Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

Relief teams led by Maguindanao Gov. Abdulrauf Macacua and Bangsamoro Social Services Minister Raissa Jajurie had initially distributed food rations to hundreds of displaced families.

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