Monday Oct, 26 2020 12:02:48 AM

Maguindanao farmers lose millions of agri-crops to floods

Climate Change/Environment • 21:30 PM Fri Sep 18, 2020
Flooded portions of Mamasapano, Maguindanao. (FC)

COTABATO CITY – As the proverb saying goes “Don't count your chickens until they are hatched.”

This is how a farmer described his fate while trying to salvage his due for harvest palay that was submerged by flood water following torrential rains that hit Maguindanao.

“We are about to harvest our palay this week, pera na sana,” the teary-eyed said. “This is our only source of livelihood after getting affected by the effects of pandemic.”

The municipal disaster risk reduction and management office of Mamasapano, Maguindanao said about 80 percent of the town’s rice field have been underwater after the water level of Liguasan marsh rose due to continuous rains the past days.

“We are affected by the pandemic and limited our movement, our crops have been damaged by flood and any time we might as well evacuate because of on-going military operations against the freedom fighters,” a farmer said, referring to government forces pursuing the Bangsamoro Islamic Freedom Fighters (BIFF).

Mothers claimed they have no more money to pay for pedicab and “payong-payong” so they decided to cross the flooded highway carrying their children.

A parlor owner named Divine said her business was downed since the front part of her establishment has been flooded for several days. “It’s like a swimming pool.”

Maceda Abdillah, MDRRMO-Mamasapano information officer, said life has been changed by the pandemic that made people’s movement limited. Worst, the farmers’ main source of livelihood was gone.

“This is the worst flooding I experience in Mamasapano in my entire life, our farmers are about to harvest crops but everything is gone,” Abdillah said.

The Bangsamoro region on Thursday extended emergency relief assistance to farmers whose crops were damaged by the natural calamity.

Abdillah said the crop damaged could amount to millions of pesos. Crop damages are still being assessed. (FC)

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