BUTUAN CITY – Butuan Gov. Arlene “Kaka” Bag-ao said Friday night Typhoon Odette has leveled Dinagat Islands to the ground and the damage to the landscape is “reminiscent, if not worse than, when Yolanda hit the province.”
“Dinagat Islands has been leveled to the ground by Super Typhoon Odette. We survived but we have yet to establish communication and access among the 7 municipalities to know the extent of the damage,” she declared.
Bag-ao said casualties reportedly left by “Odette” still need to be confirmed as there are no data yet from the towns. She added, however that the early preparations made by the towns before ‘Odette’s landfall on December 16 helped the residents survive its onslaught.
“We have a dwindling supply of food and water. Electricity and telecommunications are down. This is why we urgently and humbly ask for everyone’s help,” she said.
Bag-ao said some personnel from the provincial government were sent to the mainland (Surigao) “to find a way to deliver our call for help through all means possible.”
The residents in the island province, she pointed out, are currently in need of food, potable water, temporary shelters, fuel, hygiene kits, and medical supplies.
“We need assistance in restoring electricity, running water, and telecommunications. “Our hospitals have also suffered significant damage rendering some of them inoperable. The fields and boats of our farmers and fisherfolk have been decimated. Most of our commercial and cargo vessels, in spite of taking all necessary precautions, are now unsuitable for sea voyages effectively cutting us off from the rest of the country,” she stressed.
Bag-ao assured the people of Dinagat that together, they will be able to survive the present situation. “Our Capitol may have been destroyed, but your Provincial Government is still and will always be here to work for you as we restore our lives and livelihood,” she assured.