Philippines, PIME superior: Situation after passage of Haiyan increasingly serious
Cebu (AsiaNews) - News coming from areas affected by typhoon Haiyan "is not good. The more the hours pass, the more people on the ground to provide relief to discover newer and graver situations", Fr. Giovanni Re, regional superior of the PIME (Pontifical Institute for Foreign Missions ) in the Philippines tells AsiaNews. According to the priest, "we have to wait a few days to get a clearer idea of the devastation caused by this super typhoon", which, according to the provisional toll, has already caused at least 10 thousand deaths on the island of Leyte, the area hardest hit by the disaster.
"Some local airports have been reopened since yesterday" says Fr. Re. "Mostly military transport planes have been reactivated, I am not aware that civilian airlines have already resumed flights . Inland, especially in big cities like Letye and Dacloma, rescuers have cleared major roads. Maybe now they will be able to move aid like food, medicine and clothing by land. That would be good news . "
The super-typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines at a speed of 350 km / h . The island of Letye took the worst hit, but also other parts of the country were affected by the fury of the storm. Mgr . Achilles Dakay , Media Liaison Officer of the Archdiocese explains to AsiaNews that in Cebu " 20 parishes north of the city were damaged. Altogether, we counted 10 victims. Our bishop, Msgr. Jose Palma, has already organized a program of mutual aid : the other parishes in the city will provide aid and relief to the affected areas. The priority now is to distribute food, water and materials to start immediately upon reconstruction of houses".
In the midst of the devastation,
there is at least one sign of hope : this morning in Tacloban a young woman,
Emily Sagalis , gave birth to a girl . The
baby was born in the remains of an airport, with the help of an army doctor whom
her relatives met while seeking help. Emily,
21, has decided to call the baby Bea Joy, in honor of her mother, Beatriz , who
died during the typhoon.
Fr. Fernando Milani, vice regional superior of the PIME and a missionary in Antique , points out: "Perhaps only after a few months we will know the actual number of the dead, and I would not be surprised by the actual devastation caused by the typhoon. This time the government has done everything possible, even sending around a car equipped with megaphones to alert people. However, if you live in a straw house there is little you can do, you just have to prepare to have the house destroyed". Haiyan also passed through his province, but caused only 14 victims , nearly two for every parish in the northern part of the diocese.