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Dinagat Islands 'leveled to the ground' by Odette —Gov. Bag-ao

Typhoon Odette has leveled Dinagat Islands to the ground, reminiscent if not worse than Yolanda, Governor Arlene 'Kaka' Bag-ao said on Friday.

"Dinagat Islands has been leveled to the ground by Super Typhoon Odette. We survived," Bag-ao said in a Facebook post, showing photos of the devastation.


"We have yet to establish communication and access among the 7 municipalities to know the extent of the damage. Our landscape in the aftermath is reminiscent if not worse than when Yolanda hit our province," she added.

Odette made landfall over Dinagat Islands on Thursday at 3:10 p.m. after its landfall over Siargao Island. Both areas were under Tropical Cyclone Wind Signal No. 4 then.

"Few casualties are still being confirmed in the capital municipality, with no data yet from the other towns," Bag-ao said.

The governor said their early preparation has ensured communities' survival. 

"However, we have lost our homes. Walls and roofs were torn and blown off by Odette like paper," Bag-ao said.

"We have a dwindling supply of food and water. Electricity and telecommunications are down," she added. 

Bag-ao appealed for help, saying they need food, potable water, temporary shelters, fuel, hygiene kits, and medical supplies.

She added that they "have no way to reach our neighboring provinces as of this time."

Some of the provincial government personnel were sent to the mainland to ask for help.

"We need assistance in restoring electricity, running water, and telecommunications," Bag-ao added.

The governor said the Capitol buildings, hospitals, agricultural fields, fishing boats, and sea vessels were heavily damaged.

"Our hospitals have also suffered significant damage rendering some of them inoperable. The fields and boats of our farmers and fisherfolk have been decimated. Most of our commercial and cargo vessels, in spite of taking all necessary precautions, are now unsuitable for sea voyages effectively cutting us off from the rest of the country," she said.

Bag-ao however remained optimistic that the province will rise again with the help of others and the resilience of Dinagatnons.

Odette swept across Visayas and Mindanao starting Thursday, leaving at least 12 dead.

Siargao Island was described by Surigao del Norte Governor Francisco Matugas as having suffered "total devastation." —KG, GMA News