By Teng Datu,
Cotabato City Bureau Chief
Cotabato City – The Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (Armm) conducted simultaneous medical and relief operations in three municipalities affected by the ongoing military operation against members of the Abu Sayyaf Group in Basilan province.
Armm Governor Mujiv Hataman led the delivery of humanitarian assistance with Sitti Djalia Turabin-Hataman, representative of Anak Mindanao partylist, and officials of the Basilan provincial government, the region’s Social Welfare and Development department, the Armm – Humanitarian Emergency Action and Response Team (Armm-Heart), and the Integrated Provincial Health Office-Basilan.
Based on Armm-Heart data, the relief assistance – comprising of rice, noodles, coffee, and sardines as well as medical aid – reached at least 3,000 families in the municipalities of Albarka, Tipo-Tipo and Ungkaya Pukan.
Myrna Jo Henry, Armm-Heart information officer, said the Armm-Heart convergence team headed by Ramil Masukat, regional disaster risk reduction management officer, has been in the area since July 19 to validate the number of affected families, deliver relief assistance and provide other appropriate interventions.
“The Armm government will serve another 500 affected families this week,” Henry said. Armm-Heart is an emergency rapid response team that provides coordinated actions by all regional line agencies to limit the adverse impact of disasters and conflicts in affected communities.
Haber Asarul, Armm assemblyman in the lone district of Basilan, said the provincial government headed by Basilan Governor Jim Saliman provided roughly 5,000 food packs to the affected families last week.
He said most of the displaced families are from the villages of Bohe-Piang and Magcawa in Albarka town, Silangkum and Baguindan in Tipo-Tipo, and Sungkayut and Matata in Ungkaya Pukan.
Gov. Hataman said the regional government will closely monitor the ongoing military operation in the province to ensure the safety of the affected residents.