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KIBUNGAN, Benguet – A 20-year old man died while his 25-year old brother remains missing when the ricefield they were passing through allegedly eroded during the heavy rains brought by Tropical Storm Maring at Todag, Tacadang, here, Tuesday afternoon.
The fatality was identified as June Perez Balangen while his missing older brother was named as Romy Balangen, both residents of Todag, Tacadang, Benguet.
Initial police investigation showed that the said siblings, together with their brother, were walking towards home along a ricefield when the same eroded due to the continuous heavy downpour triggered by Tropical Storm Maring.
Their brother was able to safely run away from the site while the duo was drawn by the landslide to the lower portion of the field which is a river with huge volume of water flowing from various directions.
The body of June was retrieved by responding rescuers while search and rescue operations are underway to locate the body of Romy.
Upon learning of the aforesaid incident, Benguet caretaker congressman and Anti-Crime and Terrorism through Community Involvement and Support (ACT-CIS) Party-list Rep. Eric Yap immediately dispatched concerned personnel from his office to extend the needed assistance to the family of the victims aside from coordinating with local officials on the needs of the affected residents that will be provided the soonest.
Yap also worked out the deployment of additional units of heavy equipment from private contractors to help in clearing the series of landslides along the Acop-Kapangan-Kibungan-Bakun-Sinipsip secondary national arterial road to ensure that will be immediately passable so as not to isolate the towns of Kibungan and Kapangan.