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Cordillerans hold memorial for typhoon victims

03 October 2018

By Ellen Asis

The Cordillera Alliance (Corall) of Hong Kong held a prayer vigil on Ice House street on Sept 23 in memory of the victims of super typhoon Ompong in the Philippines, in particular those in the provinces of Benguet, Ifugao and Kalinga, which were among the hardest hit.

Fr. Dwight dela Torre of the Philippine Independence Church led the prayers at the vigil, which was attended by Corall members and guests from the Filipino community in Hong Kong.

Corall member Yollie Salvado shared that before Ompong (Mangkhut to the international community) hit, her group held a prayer brigade to pray for the safety of their families back home. The next day, her husband reportedly called to tell her that their house was toppled by the typhoon, but all their family members were safe. The other bad news was that they would not have electricity for two months.

Salvado said that despite the damage to their house, she was still grateful to God because her family was spared. She also happily related that her family received a free generator that would enable them to live a normal life despite the electricity cut-off.

Landslide in Keystone, Ucab, Itogon, Benguet (Photo from Facebook).
Dolores Balladares-Pelaez of United Filipinos- Migrante HK said that it is during difficult times like Ompong’s onslaught that the Filipino community is able to show its unity and willingness to help those in need.

Former Corall chair Josie Pingkihan lamented reports that blamed workers at the mine for the landslide in Lucnab, Benguet, that killed dozens of people, saying the false accusation made her cry. She said the tragedy was more the result of the illegal mining activities of the Benguet Mining Corporation that caused the mountain to collapse.

Corall ended the program by giving thanks to their  fellow members in the Filipino community who extended help and support in their time of grief.
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