Manila, Jan 16 (EFE).- At least 28 people have died and three are missing as a result of heavy rainfall, severe flooding and landslides that have devastated several parts of south and east Philippines since the beginning of January, the disaster management agency said Monday.
Since Jan. 2, more than 155,000 people have been living in evacuation centers and almost 1,400,000 citizens have been affected by the series of storms that have hit the archipelago, the National Disaster Risk Reduction & Management Council (NDRRMC) said in its latest update.
The maximum number of deaths have occurred in Zamboanga, in southern Mindanao, where 8 people died, with the remaining recorded in Eastern Visayas (7), Northern Mindanao (7), Bicol (5) and Davao (1), according to NDRRMC.
Although the latest storm to trigger heavy rains in the south and east of the country for a week is moving away from the worst affected areas on Monday, another one will unleash heavy showers in the northeast and west of the Philippines in the coming hours, state weather forecaster, PAGASA, said.
Airport authorities announced the cancellation of several domestic flights on Monday.
Damage to agriculture is pegged at over 2.74 billion Philippine pesos ($50.3 million) amid a major increase in the price of staple food items due to a shortage in the production of crops, among other reasons.
The Philippines, which is hit every year by between 15 and 20 cyclones, is ranked among the most vulnerable countries to the impacts of climate change.
Experts point to shantytowns as the country’s main vulnerability, where natural disasters cause large numbers of deaths, highlighting the poor state of infrastructure. EFE