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Leaders stress urgency in flood relief, recovery effort

Leaders have called for work related to the flood relief and recovery effort to be expedited in all provinces hit by extreme weather conditions.
During a visit to Oudomxay province starting on August 7, Vice President Phankham Viphavanh told provincial authorities to speed up relief and recovery to help affected villagers, Deputy Head of the province’s Administration Office, Mr Onkham Sisomboun, told Vientiane Times yesterday.
From July 15-22, tropical storm Son-tinh lashed 11 provinces across the country, resulting in severe flooding in nine of them.
The vice president, who visited the three northern provinces of Luang Namtha, Bokeo and Oudomxay, is among many leaders to have visited flood-hit provinces in recent days to supervise the relief and recovery efforts.
In Oudomxay, farmland and other property worth at least 29 billion kip was reported to have been lost or damaged, Mr Onkham said, citing an initial report. More than 50 houses have been damaged.
The damage to infrastructure such as roads, electricity, telecommunication networks and other public facilities has not yet been assessed.

As of July 31, some 812 people in 18 villages of five districts in Oudomxay were reported to have been affected. More than 2,723 hectares of farmland were inundated.
In Luang Namtha, the vice president’s first stop, about 125 hectares of farmland has been submerged and four bridges have been damaged, limiting transport links.
During his trips to the provinces, Mr Phankham also visited flooded areas.
Continuous and heavy rainfall unleashed by tropical storm Son-tinh caused severe flooding in nine provinces.
More than 780 villages in these provinces were inundated, affecting thousands of families while more than 74,000 hectares of farmland were submerged.Thousands of families have been evacuated and now live in temporary shelters.
Attapeu province in the south is the hardest hit after continuous rainfall caused a fracture in one of five auxiliary dams at the Xe-Pian Xe-Namnoy hydropower project.
The collapse of the dam on July 23 flooded 13 villages in the province’s Sanamxay district, killing 35 villagers while 99 people are still missing. Thousands more have been left homeless.
Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, President of the National Assembly Mrs Pany Yathotou and Deputy Prime Minister Sonexay Siphandone have visited Attapeu to guide the relief and recovery effort.
Prime Minister Thongloun also visited the central provinces of Savannakhet and Khammuan to give advice on ways to cope with the flooding there. 
State authorities are warning members of the public to pay close attention to forecasts and to stay alert to weather conditions with the rainy season likely to continue for several more weeks.



By Souksakhone Vaenkeo
(Latest Update
August 11,

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