"The task force has been set up in accordance with a decree of the Environmental Affairs and Forestry Ministry. Tonight, the team will depart for the location," IB Putera Parthama, the Director General of the River Basin and Protected Forest Management of the ministry, said here, Tuesday.
The task force is headed by M Saparis Sudaryanto, the ministry's Director on Planning and Evaluation of River Basin Management
It will collect data and facts about the floods and landslides in Papua to study them for future solutions.
"I will collect facts as accurately as possible," Sudaryanto said.
The ministry will also set up an information command post to update information on the flooding situation in Sentani.
Meanwhile, as of Sunday evening, 61 people were dead and 74 people were still missing following the flooding in Sentani in the easternmost Indonesian province of Papua.
The flash flood injured 43 people, while 69 others were still missing, spokesman for the Papua Provincial Police Senior Commissioner Ahmad Kamal said.
The injured are being treated in several hospitals, including RSUD Yowari, RS Dian Harapan and RS Bhayangkara.
The missing people included 34 from Milinik village, 20 from BTN Gajah Mada housing complex, seven from Inauli housing complex, four from Bambar village, and two from BTN Bintang Timur housing complex.
The flood also destroyed 351 houses, three bridges, eight school buildings, two churches, one mosque, one market and 104 house-cum-shops and drainage system.
Kamal said some 1,000 people have evacuated to higher ground following the flash flood. "We have set up tents for the evacuees in several areas considered safe," he said.
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