JAKARTA, KOMPAS.com – President Joko ‘Jokowi’ Widodo has ordered the restoration of access to areas of East Nusa Tenggara province [NTT], after flash floods, landslides and other natural disasters from Cyclone Seroja left hundreds dead and missing since last weekend.
“I have asked Minister of Public Works and Housing or PUPR [Basuki Hadimuljono] to bring heavy machinery to pave a land route to the stricken parts [of NTT]. I also ordered air and sea routes to be prepared, in case land routes could not be penetrated,” said Jokowi on Tuesday.
“I have ordered the navy to deploy the KRI Oswald Siahaan-354 to provide supplies from the Ministry of Health and the Ministry of Social Affairs for those stricken by the flash floods in NTT,” he said in a written statement.
“I also ordered two C-130 Hercules from Jakarta and East Java, as well as helicopters to airlift supplies to the flash flood victims, as well as two battalions from Bali and South Sulawesi to help evacuate [displaced persons] and provide first response units. The latter will also clear rubble from the floods.”
The National Agency for Disaster Countermeasures [BNPB] also deployed to NTT following Jokowi’s order to send more SAR [Search and Rescue] teams to areas stricken by flash floods and landslides, such as NTT’s Lembata and Adonara districts in Flores island.
“The flash floods and landslides killed at least 81 people and left 103 others missing. But this data is liable to change,” said BNPB head Doni Monardo.
“The flash floods also destroyed 500 homes and forced us to relocate hundreds of people. The Ministry of Social Affairs and the National Police also organized field kitchens in displaced persons at nearly every displaced persons camp.”
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The evacuees included hundreds of people from two villages at the foothills of the Mount Ile Lewotolok volcano, 11 of whom were killed in a lava flood from the volcano last Sunday.
The flash floods and landslide occurred on Lembata and Adonara on Sunday, following extreme weather in the form of heavy rains over the preceding two days.
The neighboring province of West Nusa Tengara’s Bima regency was also hit by floods that destroyed hundreds of homes and displaced the local inhabitants.
(Writers: Dian Erika Nugraheny, Achmad Nasrudin Yahya, Fitria Chusna Farisa
Editor : Dani Prabowo, Bayu Galih, Icha Rastika)