Super typhoon Goni, known by its local name Rolly, left at least 10 people dead in the Bicol Region, where lahar that flowed from Mayon Volcano buried homes that stood along its path.
The Office of Civil Defense said that nine of those who died are from Albay, while one is from Catanduanes.
Rep. Zaldy Co of the Ako Bicol Party-list said that more than 300 houses were buried in the village of San Francisco in Guinobatan in Albay. He added that aside from being buried underneath lahar, the homes were crushed by huge rocks that fell down Mayon’s slopes. Two residents are missing.
“Several people believed to be buried alive,” Co said.
As of yesterday, more than 346,000 Bicolanos have been staying in evacuation centers, and the government said that the typhoon displaced more than a million people in the country.
Goni was a super typhoon before it struck the Philippines and packed winds traveling for 225 kilometers per hour and gusts of up to 310 kph. It first made landfall in Bato town Catanduanes at 4:50am yesterday. Four hours later, it weakened into a typhoon.
Meanwhile, Filipinos noticed that President Rodrigo Duterte is nowhere to be found amidst the typhoon’s onslaught, with the hashtag #NasaanangPangulo (“Where is the President?”) trending on Twitter. Many Pinoys expected Duterte to provide a public briefing addressing the calamity. Still, his spokesman Harry Roque said that the president stayed home in Davao City, where he is supposedly monitoring developments. Duterte won’t be back in Malacañang Palace until tomorrow.
A fuming @micoblanko said, “We got the strongest typhoon and the weakest government.”
— joseph (@micoblanko) November 1, 2020
“What a lot of the die hard supporters fail to understand is that critique does not mean we wish for the person to fail. In fact, it’s the opposite. We are asking #NasaanAngPangulo because we are looking for leadership in times of crisis like yesterday,” @jpocariz wrote.
What a lot of the die hard supporters fail to understand is that critique does not mean we wish for the person to fail. In fact, the opposite nga e. We are asking #NasaanAngPangulo because we are looking for leadership in times of crisis like yesterday.
— Jp Ocariz (@jpocariz) November 2, 2020
Addressing Duterte fanatics who are defending the president from criticism, a certain @JULESguiang tweeted, “#NasaanAngPangulo is an accountability tweet. That is not bashing. It’s a call for leadership, especially when we’re in a crisis in a middle of a pandemic.
#NasaanAngPangulo is an accountability tweet. Hindi ‘yan bashing. It’s a call for leadership especially when we’re in a crisis in a middle of a pandemic.
— jules guiang (@JULESguiang) November 1, 2020
Are you satisfied with the way Duterte handled this calamity? Tell us by leaving a comment below or tweeting to @CoconutsManila.
This article, Typhoon Goni leaves at least 10 dead as Filipinos look for missing Duterte, originally appeared on Coconuts, Asia's leading alternative media company.