11 Oct 2010

Calls for more to be done for flood survivors in West Papua

12:07 pm on 11 October 2010

Media reports from Indonesia say the death toll from flash floods in West Papua province has reached 144, with another 161 people missing and feared dead.

The Jakarta Globe newspaper says more than 3,000 residents have been evacuated.

But aid workers say the government has overlooked those left behind.

An official from the Indonesian Red Cross, La Abidin, said that survivors were being forced to seek refuge in damaged homes and buildings because the government has focused more on recovering bodies.

He said the government should set up proper evacuation camps immediately for these people.

He added rescue efforts were suspended on Sunday due to heavy rains.

The head of the Wasior Disaster Command Post, DJ Sawaki, said that most areas which have been isolated from the town due to landslides and floods are now accessible.

The Health Ministry's Director General for Disease Control, Tjandra Yoga Aditama, has said it is imperative to get all survivors out of Wasior because of the high risk of more flooding and an outbreak of infectious diseases there.

He also said there was very little clean water, and the electricity supply had been cut off.