Simpang Empat, W Sumatra (ANTARA) - Coordinating Minister for Human Development and Culture Muhadjir Effendy has directed the military to clear the road from Simpang Empat to Talu in West Pasaman, West Sumatra, which was buried following landslides on Monday evening.

"I have sought help from the Combat Engineer Detachment (of the Indonesian Military) to use heavy equipment to handle the (debris from the) landslides and create an emergency way," Effendy said while visiting an earthquake-affected location in West Pasaman on Thursday.

Debris from the landslide blocked access to Rimbo Kejahatan Kajai Road and restoring access to the road without delay is crucial for distributing assistance to earthquake victims, he explained.

While inspecting the homes of earthquake victims, Effendy also noted the lack of toilets or washing facilities for evacuees.

"I saw that there were not enough washing facilities, and I have contacted the secretary general of the Public Works and Public Housing Ministry for their provision," he informed.

The central government is continuing to ensure that the needs of earthquake victims in West Pasaman are met, he said.

According to the minister, the government is focusing on four groups for its earthquake mitigation and handling efforts: people who died in the quake, people who went missing, people who were injured, and people who had to be evacuated from their homes.

Meanwhile, among the evacuee group, the elderly, women, pregnant women, and children are being prioritized, he said.

During Thursday’s visit, Effendy also handed over some monetary aid and logistical supplies for people affected by the natural disaster.

He visited evacuation shelters and met with residents affected by the quake in West Pasaman. He was accompanied by West Sumatra Governor Mahyeldi, deputy district head of West Pasaman, Risnawanto, and other officials during the visit.

On behalf of the central government, Effendy expressed his appreciation to local officials for working hard and acting quickly in dealing with the disaster.

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Translator: Laila S, Kenzu T
Editor: Sri Haryati
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