Bakwits (Photo from Kilab Multimedia)

The evacuation center shared by almost 3,000 other evacuees in the provincial sports center in Tandag City, Surigao del Sur. (Photo from Kilab Multimedia)

DAVAO CITY – A Manobo couple, who joined thousands to flee their residence, lost a daughter after she fell ill inside the provincial sports center in Tandag City, Surigao del Sur early Tuesday morning.

Rinabel, 4, the youngest daughter of the couple Maribel and Rexan Enriquez, died at around 3:00 a.m.

Maribel, in previous news reports, said her daughter had asthma and was “really sick” on Monday.

Julieto Trinidal, 29, who teaches multi-grade in the Tribal Filipino Program for Surigao del Sur (TRIFPSS) in San Agustin told Davao Today that Rinabel was one of their students in day care.

“Diri lang nigrabe ang sakit sa bata (The child’s sickness worsened here),” he said, referring to the evacuation center shared by almost 3,000 other evacuees.

Trinidal said all of them sleep on cartons (cardboard boxes) spread on concrete bleachers.

Trinidal also said the Enriquezes are his neighbors in Sitio Magkahunao, Barangay Buhisan, San Agustin town.

Trinidal, who is also a Manobo, said his family traveled the whole night with the Enriquezes when they evacuated their village for fear of the Magahat Bagani Force.

On September 1, members of the militia force killed three individuals in Km. 16, Barangay Diatagon, Lianga town. Those who were killed were Emerito Samarca, executive director of the Alternative Learning Center for Agricultural and Livelihood Development (ALCADEV), Mapasu chairman Dionel Campos, and his cousin who is also a community leader Datu Jovello Campos.

Trinidal said Rinabel’s parents are blaming their situation for the death of their daughter.

Trinidal, who evacuated with his wife and two children aged 4 and 2 years old said several children are getting sick inside the evacuation center.

He said he even sent his children to the hospital to have them checked up because of persistent coughs and colds that started yesterday.

Trinidal also lamented that they worry where to get the medicines for their children.

“Ang mga tambal nga gireseta sa akong anak, wala nako napalit tanan (I wasn’t able to buy all the medicines for my children),” said Trinidal.

He said they are using his last “savings”. “Kung mahurot ni, wala na gyud mi (If this is used up, we have nothing left),” he said.

He said they are asking for help from those who could provide them with medicines especially for the children. (

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