President departs for NTT to observe disaster mitigation efforts

President departs for NTT to observe disaster mitigation efforts

President Joko Widodo departed for East Nusa Tenggara on Friday (April 9) to ensure disaster mitigation efforts run well. ANTARA/Presidential Secretariat

Jakarta (ANTARA) - President Joko Widodo, on Friday morning, departed for East Nusa Tenggara (NTT) Province that was hit by flash floods early this week to ensure that disaster mitigation efforts are running smoothly.

The president and his entourage departed from the Halim Perdanakusuma Airbase in East Jakarta at 6 a.m. local time aboard the Presidential Aircraft Indonesia-1 and are scheduled to land at the Frans Seda Airport in Sikka District, East Nusa Tenggara.

The head of state will visit several flash flood-hit areas in East Nusa Tenggara.

The president had earlier instructed his ranks to dispatch relief aid to the affected areas.

The first phase of presidential aid comprising five thousand packages of basic necessities had been dispatched on Tuesday aboard the Indonesian Air Force's Hercules aircraft and the Indonesian Navy's warship

Nearly 3,500 of the five thousand packages of basic necessities arrived in Adomara and Lembata and were distributed to the affected people.

The next presidential aid comprising 10 thousand packages of basic necessities will be sent later while awaiting a mode of transportation.

The president has also sent 13 thousand packages of basic necessities to help alleviate the burden of natural disaster victims in Bima District, West Nusa Tenggara Province.

As of Thursday, 163 people had lost their lives due to the Seroja tropical cyclone that triggered flash floods in East Nusa Tenggara, according to the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB).

"In total, 163 people died, while 45 others remain missing in East Nusa Tenggara," BNPB Chief Doni Monardo stated at an online press conference here on Thursday.

Most deaths were reported in East Flores District, particularly Adonara Island, where 71 people died and five others remain missing, he stated.

In Lembata District, 43 people died and 25 others are missing, while 27 people lost their lives and 14 others are untraceable in Alor District, he remarked.

The natural disaster has also claimed six lives in Malaka District and three lives in Kupang District, with one person still missing.

In Kupang City, the disaster claimed the lives of six residents.

The tropical cyclone, which triggered flash floods, strong winds, and landslides, affected Kupang City, East Flores, Malaka, Lembata, Ngada, West Sumba, East Sumba, Rote Ndao, and Alor.

At least 1,083 families comprising 2,683 people were affected by the flash floods.

The BNPB has deployed helicopters to support the evacuation process and distribute relief aid as well as other logistics in the province.

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