‘Help Mindanao’: Angel Locsin shares plight of earthquake victims

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Angel Locsin shared today a glimpse of her visit to quake-affected areas in Mindanao on November 1 and 2 on social media.

The 34-year-old actress personally did relief efforts in two of the worst-hit areas — Digos City, Davao Del Sur and Makilala, North Cotabato.

Her Instagram or Twitter carried no posts during the duration of her visit wherein she was joined by fiancé Neil Arce. However, videos and photos of Angel from netizens surfaced and spread on social media.

These included pictures and videos uploaded November 2 by local resident Flora Mae Montes Basiliote that showed Angel checking on the conditions of evacuees in each of the temporary shelter set up in Barangay Batasan in Makilala.

Today, November 3, the actress took to Twitter to thank those who helped make her relief efforts possible.

With the hashtags #GivingCreditWhereTheCreditIsDue and #HelpMindanao, Angel’s post read: “No politics here. Just respect and gratitude to Cong. Paolo Duterte and Sir Bryan Lim for lending the truck with manpower, on a holiday, for the cause WITHOUT ASKING FOR ANYTHING IN RETURN.”

She added, “No posters, no mentions, no photo ops. No ‘pa-pogi’ points. Just pure service. This act deserves an appreciation post. MARAMING SALAMAT PO.”

‘Homeless and traumatized’

On Instagram, on the other hand, the TV and movie star shared the sorry state quake victims — particularly those in Makilala town — are in.

In a separate comment, she said, “Sa kasalukuyan, nasa Barangay Batasan, Makilala po sila ngayon. Sa may banana plantation.

“Sa kasamaang palad, namatay po ang kapitan nila habang nag rerescue ng mga constituents niya kaya wala po silang leader ngayon. Kabilang po sila sa Manobo tribe.”

In a video interview by Angel, Pastor Joel Pang-ot of Barangay Batasan narrated that the two consecutive, powerful earthquakes that shook Central Mindanao and Davao Region this week, left them homeless and traumatized.

“Yung unang lindol, October 29, duon sa Purok 5, kami yung labis na natamaan kasi lahat ng pamamahay, more than 30 households po, pinadapa lahat,” he began.

“Wala na kaming mabalikan duon dahil sa nangyari. Yun ang dahilan at pinalikas kami ni (barangay) captain Cesar Bangot sa safe shelter sa covered court.”

But what was supposed to be their refuge caved in as another earthquake struck on October 31, killing the village chief Bangot and injuring others.

“Muntikan kami mamatay lahat po nung panahon na yun. Gumuho talaga!” Pastor Joel recalled.

“Kaya ito, di namin alam ano ang gagawin. Kaya kami nag-upload ng mga videos na sana malaman at makarating sa mga gustong tumulong.”

Keeping the faith

Without homes to return to, evacuees are forced to live in makeshift tents.

“Actually, ngayon wala na po kaming bahay na mauwian. Kahit yung lote namin na-landslide siya. Nasa tent po kami Ma’am,” he told Angel.

“Alam namin, pagkatapos ng mga tulong na ito, wala kaming mapuntahan, wala kaming mauwian. Hindi namin alam kung paano tumayo. Kung paano tumayo sa delubyong dumating dito sa aming barangay po,” Pastor Joel added.

He also appealed for help and attention from President Duterte and Mindanaoan senators Bong Go and Manny Pacquiao.

“Walang wala na po talaga kami,” he lamented.

Angel with evacuees staying in temporary shelters set up in Barangay Batasan in Makilala, North Cotabato. Credit: Flora Mae Montes Basiliote

Despite the tragic situation, Pastor Joel said the survivors are keeping the faith.

“Isa lang talaga ang kinakapitan namin ngayon. Kahit lugmok na lugmok kami po sa mga nangyari sa amin, sa trahedyang ito, alam namin may Panginoon.

“Sa kanya nalang talaga kami kumakapit ngayon at humihingi ng tulong at awa para makabangon ulit sa trahedyang sinapit namin ngayon.”

Increase in numbers

According to Philippine Star, quake victims are desperately in need of food, water and medicines.

Concerned government agencies have reportedly been mobilized to address these needs, however, good samaritans wanting to help are welcome and advised to coordinate with local government units, the report added.

Humanitarian organizations such as the Philippine Red Cross have also dispatched help to the affected areas.

Citing numbers from the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council (NDRRMC), Star also reported that the death toll in the two quakes has climbed to 21. The magnitude 6.6 quake on October 29 claimed nine lives out of the 18 deaths in Central Mindanao. Others perished from the magnitude 6.5 quake that took place only two days after.

Based on yesterday night’s NDRRMC figures, quake-affected families have totaled to 29,479 families or 147,395 persons.

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