A total of 118 people were confirmed to have died in flash floods and landslides over the weekend triggered by days of heavy rains in the central and southern Philippines, officials said Sunday.
The death toll from landslides that hit three towns in the central province of Southern Leyte rose to 102 from the earlier reported 61, Governor Rosete Lerias was quoted by the Philippine News Agency as saying.
Earlier, the National Disaster Coordinating Council (NDCC) said 77 people have been confirmed dead while 123 others missing and feared dead in Southern Leyte and three other provinces in the south, including 61 dead and 114 missing in Southern Leyte.
Lerias said the affected towns in Southern Leyte is now suffering from lack of formalin, medicines, food, potable water, and communication and transportation.
Rescuers are continuing their search for possible survivors and the Office of Civil Defense is distributing food rations, clothes and water to more than 7,300 victims of the disasters at various evacuation centers in the central province and the three southern provinces of Surigao del Norte, Agusan del Sur and Agusan del Norte.
Officials said rescue efforts were hampered by bad weather, destroyed bridges and the thick mud that laded roads leading to the affected areas.
President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo has ordered the NDCC and other government agencies to intensify rescue and relief operations in the affected areas. The military has also been mobilized for the purpose.