Aid needed in Cagayan as its 18 towns remain submerged

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Aerial photo of the massive flooding in Cagayan

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, December 6) – A governor is asking for assistance from the national government as 18 towns in Cagayan province remain flooded due to unceasing rains for the past three weeks, caused by storms and other weather systems.

Speaking to CNN Philippines’ Newsroom Ngayon, Cagayan Governor Manuel Mamba said, “Talagang saturated po dito at yung baha po namin hindi pa humupa pa ng husto ay nandito na naman po, kaya napakadali po na magbaha lalong lalo na po pag nasabayan na ng ulan diyan sa Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, Kalinga, Apayao, Ifugao.”

[Translation: Cagayan is really saturated and the flood here has not subsided fully and is here yet again. It is really susceptible to flooding, especially since it simultaneously rained over sa Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Quirino, Kalinga, Apayao, Ifugao.]

The governor explained that the rainfall from those provinces flow into the Cagayan River. The river overspilled its banks can no longer contain the flow though its channel. The burst in its riverbank caused floods into their low-lying areas, rendering the roads leading to Ilocos Norte impassable, and around tens of thousands of people homeless, Mamba said.

The official said that around 70,000 evacuees need blankets, water and other relief goods.

He also said: “We need a lot of help po from the government after this dahil nakikita po namin yung damage sa crops, sa livestock, at private properties including infrastructure po namin. Kukumpunihin po namin to at we will ask po for a lot of help from them."

[Translation: We need a lot of help from the government afte this, because we are seeing the [floodwaters’] damage to crops, livestock, private properties, including infrastructure. We will need to fix them and we will ask for a lot of help from them.]

Cagayan has been placed under a state of calamity due to severe flooding. The declaration of a state of calamity allows the provincial council to tap into their calamity funds to implement aid recovery efforts following a catastrophic event.