Archipelago

Thousands in Palue Island
food shortage

Thousands of people on Palue Island, about three sea miles from Sikka regency in East Nusa Tenggara, are facing a food shortage due to the impact of Mount Rokatenda’s eruption on Saturday.

“People in Palue are short of food. The volcanic ash, spewed from Mount Rokatenda, has damaged all of their food crops, like corn and bananas,” said Sikka Deputy Regent Damianus Wera as quoted by Antara News Agency on Thursday.

Damianus said that his office had prepared humanitarian assistance mainly in the form of food and clean water for about 12,000 people on Palue Island.

“I just came back from Palue Island where I observed the condition of local residents on the slopes of the mountain. I noticed the serious problem of diminishing food supplies,” he said.

He reiterated that his office was very serious about handling this issue because he realized that a late response would bring an unfavorable impact.

Damianus also said that he would immediately coordinate with related offices to monitor conditions in the affected area and consider the possibility of giving seedlings to local residents so they could plant crops during the current rainy season. (nfk)

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