Flood hits Sugud families again, leaving a trail of destruction

KOTA KINABALU: Hundreds of Sugud families were on the road to recovery from the devastating Sept 15 "mud tsunami" when another round of floods hit Tuesday (Oct 12), bringing back tonnes of mud into their homes.

However, the mud floods triggered by severe rainfall from the tail of Typhoon Kompasu was not as bad as the previous flood where homes were left, in some cases, up to three metres in mud and debris.

"The latest flood has taken us many steps back," said Decy Ebol, a local Sugud resident who has been working with other volunteers over the past month to help coordinate assistance for the villagers.

Some 2,500 villagers living in some 750 houses were directly or indirectly affected by the floods and mudflows that left a trail of destruction in the Sugud, locked within a hilly terrain of the Crocker Range, about 25km from the city here.

"We managed to clean up the houses to at least liveable conditions but the heavy rains (on Tuesday) reversed at least 40% of whatever we have achieved so far," said Ebol, whose volunteers had helped villagers removed tonnes of mud from badly affected houses, as well as hired a tractor to help clear some roads leading to houses.

Sabahans from all walks of life came to the rescue of the Sugud residents as they donated cash, foodstuff, bottled water, cooking utensils, clothing, mattresses, pillows, blankets, wheelbarrows and shovels, among other things worth about RM700,000 to help the local villagers.

The volunteers, numbering between 70 and 200, who worked from a village church hall, are continuing to get calls for assistance.

"People are still asking for food baskets and other aid. We are still getting public support and will continue to help," said Ebol, whose team was planning to wind down but the latest flooding has forced them to carry on.

About 50% of the houses remain without electricity due to severe damages to the main power lines while piped water was being restored.

Sugud was the epicentre of the September flooding for the Penampang district which has been hit badly by six floods this year, including three over the past one month.

The floods have destroyed large tracts of farmland and properties, including vehicles for the mainly Kadazandusun folks, many of whom are farmers and self-employed.

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Sabah , flooding , Penampang , Sugud


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