It is necessary to rehabilitate Rakhine State to be better than the original situation: Senior General

Severely cyclonic storm Mocha passed the Rakhine coastal areas near Sittway on 14 May, causing losses and damage, and 17 townships in Rakhine State were declared as natural disaster-affected areas.
Chairman of the State Administration Council Prime Minister Senior General Min Aung Hlaing, yesterday afternoon, went to disaster-hit Sittway and gave guidance on emergency management, response, rescue and cooperation, and rehabilitation measures.
While in Sittway, the Senior General inspected the airport and losses and damage triggered by the cyclonic storm in Sittway by car.

Undertaking of preparations and current rescue and relief measures
Rakhine State Chief Minister U Htein Lin reported to the

Senior General on the formation of the state disaster management committee, the opening of the command post of the state disaster emergency management office at the Rakhine State government office on 7 May and similar offices in seven districts and 17 townships, arrangement for cyclone shelters, evacuation of people to safer places in respective townships, purchase of reserve rice, cooking oil, salt, fish-paste and fuel with the emergency fund of the state government, stockpiling of relief supplies under the arrangement of the state government, storage of 17 relief items by the Disaster Management Department.

Undertaking of ministries, Tatmadaw, and State government in relevant sectors
Union ministers and officials reported on efforts to repair telephone lines, repairing of Sittway Airport to admit landing of aircraft day and night, installation of flight direct communication systems, supply electricity to Sittway Hospital with the use of generators, healthcare services of two special medic teams at Sittway General Hospital, readiness for operation theatres, and distribution of health pamphlets and educative measures.
They also presented loading of rice bags and construction materials on naval vessels for Rakhine State, transport of foodstuffs and relief supplies to storm-hit areas to Sittway and then to Rathedaung Township and other affected areas, needs to manage losses of harvested summer paddy in Rakhine State, stockpiling of timbers in Rakhine State as well as in Magway, Ayeyawady and Bago regions and Chin State, and arrangements to start reconstruction tasks in these regions.

It is necessary to rehabilitate Rakhine State to be better than the original situation
After hearing the reports, the Senior General said that natural disasters are unavoidable, and if preparations are made to face the disaster, the country can overcome it with the least loss and damage. Five days before the storm, storm warnings have been released. It is necessary to rehabilitate Rakhine State to be better than the original situation.
The Ministry of Home Affairs primarily take responsibility for rescue and relief measures in cooperation with other ministries and staff, the Senior General stressed. The storm could not fall coconut plants. So, it is necessary to take a lesson from the disaster and extend the cultivation of windbreaks and coconut plants. At the ceremony to donate relief supplies for the affected areas yesterday morning, the Tatmadaw (Army, Navy and Air) families and well-wishers donated K13.181 billion. Of them, K7 billion will be allotted to Rakhine State for relief and rehabilitation measures.

Plans to take rescue, relief and rehabilitation measures through united strength
Priority must be given to repairing basic education high schools for the learning of students. If all cooperate in relief and rehabilitation tasks, the affected areas will soonest have the original situation. Offers from the international community for providing aid have been accepted. But, relief and rehabilitation tasks must be done through existing united strength. Seventeen townships of Rakhine State have been declared as disaster-hit regions for making donations to the emergency fund for undertaking relief and rehabilitation tasks. The Senior General pointed out that as the recent natural disaster left the least casualities, it is necessary to manage to overcome the impacts of the storm with a strong spirit.
The Senior General presented K7 billion for relief and rehabilitation tasks in Rakhine State and relief supplies to the Rakhine State chief minister.
The Senior General inspected losses and damage left by the severe cyclonic storm Mocha in Sittway and gave necessary guidance.
Rakhine State disaster management bodies have been formed to do rehabilitation tasks. A total of 23,700 people from Sittway, MraukU, Maungtaw, Kyaukpyu, Thandwe, Taungup and An townships were evacuated to safer places before the storm and 626,849 people to other safe places. Likewise, 62,319 people from IDP camps were moved to safe areas. The storm blew off roofs of houses and office buildings as well as religious edifices in Rakhine State and caused damage to some TV retransmission towers and communication towers. Up to 14 May, there were two dead persons and 28 injured persons, according to the initial information. The Senior General himself inspected Rakhine State to carry out necessary rescue, relief and rehabilitation tasks and gave necessary guidance to officials. — MNA/TTA

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An aerial view of Sittway after being battered by Cyclone Mocha.
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