Some residents left homeless after fire in Manila on Mother's Day

Izzy Lee, ABS-CBN News

Posted at May 15 2023 12:28 AM

MANILA - It was not the Mother's Day celebration that Lola Eden had in mind. 

Instead of celebrating and relaxing with her family, she found herself sleeping on the streets of Oroquieta in Manila with her 10 grandchildren and three children.

Their house was one of the 400 homes that were destroyed by a fire that broke out in the early morning of May 14 in Barangay 310, Sta. Cruz, Manila.

"Di po namin mapatayo yung aming barong-barong, nandito po kami ngayon sa kalye...Eh Mother's Day na Mother's Day dito po kami," laments Lola Eden, hoping for aid from the government.

"Kaya sana mabigyan po kami ng konting tulong, wala eh. Hirap talaga kami ngayon. Wala kaming naisalbang damit, ubos talaga," she added.

Some of the affected families, like Arnel Ducay's, had no choice but to sleep in their tuk-tuk which also served as their shelter.

"Magtatabi-tabi na lang kami nakaupo sa tuk-tuk po...'Yung ginagamit naming ilaw yung battery ng tuk-tuk," he shared.

With the evacuation site at the covered court unable to accommodate all the displaced families, some had no choice but to sleep on the streets. Others like Roselyn Isid, were able to find a shelter in the covered court, but the limited space meant she had to share a cramped tent with 14 people.

"Bale sa gilid po kaming malalaki po mag-upo na lang, sasandal na lang sa gilid-gilid po. Sa latag yung mga bata na lang po," Isid said.

As Barangay Chairman Roland Gacula revealed, the fire affected more than a thousand residents, leaving them homeless. The two missing others were found and are currently seeking treatment at the hospital, according to Gacula.

"Sa tingin ko okay naman kasi yung isa...biglang nahaplos ng apoy yung sa may hita niya tsaka sa likod...'Yung isa naman tumalon sa bubong," Gacula said.

Barangay officials are actively seeking help from government officials to immediately provide temporary shelters for those affected by fire.

Gacula in a phone conversation with ABS-CBN News said unfortunately two persons lost their lives in the blaze.

ABS-CBN News earlier reported 1 fatality and is now trying to reach out to Manila Fire District to confirm reports of 2 killed in the fire incident.