2nd batch of aid sent to Haiyan victims

National 1 minute, 34 seconds

BANDAR SERI BEGAWAN

BRUNEI’S second batch of relief aid for Supertyphoon Haiyan victims is expected to reach Tacloban in the Philippines today, where over 600,000 people have been displaced after one of the most powerful storms on record recently tore through the coastal city.

The Royal Brunei Air Force transport aircraft, CN-235, departed from the Air Force Base in Rimba at 10am yesterday, carrying an estimated 1,700kg of medical supplies, bottled water and dried food. Pehin Datu Pekerma Jaya Brigadier General Dato Seri Pahlawan Mohd Tawih Abdullah, Royal Brunei Armed Forces (RBAF) deputy commander, told The Brunei Times that the CN-235 landed in Cebu before its scheduled flight to Tacloban at 5.30am today.

“Our aircraft was actually waiting to get into Tacloban. There are so many aircraft waiting to bring in relief aid that they only have 60 minutes on the ground,” he said.

The deputy RBAF commander explained they were able to communicate with their military counterparts in the Philippines to facilitate Brunei’s humanitarian relief efforts for Supertyphoon Haiyan victims.

He added that Brunei’s National Disaster Management Centre (NDMC) also coordinated with the ASEAN Humanitarian Assistance (AHA) Centre to distribute the relief aid to local authorities.

“They have responded quite urgently, so that’s a plus point to our NDMC,” remarked Pehin Dato Mohd Tawih, pointing out that several other government agencies including the embassies are involved in the humanitarian relief efforts.

The Royal Brunei Navy ship, KDB Darussalam, is also expected to arrive with the first batch of relief aid in Tacloban today. Commenting on the donations that have been pouring in through the humanitarian fund set up by the Ministry of Culture, Youth and Sport for Supertyphoon Haiyan victims, the deputy RBAF commander said he was touched by the response from the public. Pehin Dato Mohd Tawih also offered his condolences to victims in the typhoon-ravaged Philippines.

The Brunei Times