World

Power, water restored in quake-hit city

SURIGAO, PHILIPPINES Authorities in the Philippines have begun to restore electricity and water supply to areas hit by a powerful earthquake in the south that killed six people and damaged public infrastructure.

President Rodrigo Duterte visited affected areas yesterday in Surigao City and, according to ABS-CBN online news, pledged the government would give 2 billion Philippine pesos (S$57 million) in assistance.

Mr Carlos Egay, vice-governor of Surigao del Norte province, said life seemed to be returning to normal after the 6.7-magnitude earthquake that rocked the city on Friday night.

Residents who rushed to higher ground amid fears of a tsunami have returned to their homes, he said.

"More than 100 aftershocks have been recorded since Friday, some noticeable, some not too much. Hopefully, they will not result in any more damage," Mr Egay said yesterday.

Friday's earthquake, the city's strongest since one in 1879, caused at least 400 million pesos in damage to schools, bridges, homes, hotels, and other infrastructure, he said.

The total is sure to rise, he said, as authorities have yet to assess the damage to the still-shut airport, where the runaway has cracks.

Local officials have placed Surigao City under a state of calamity to hasten relief and rehabilitation efforts. - REUTERS

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