Latest Stories

400 Filipino evacuees from Sabah stranded on Turtle Islands–PH Navy exec


ZAMBOANGA CITY, Philippines–More than 400 individuals from Sabah have been stranded on Taganak Island (Turtle Islands) in Tawi-Tawi province since Saturday night, waiting to be rescued by the government, a Philippine Navy official said on Sunday.

Philippine Navy Capt. Rene Yongque, commander of Naval Task Force 62, told the Philippine Daily Inquirer that some 400 individuals reached the Philippine waters at past 7 p.m.

“They were guided by our Navy personnel, who were then on patrol towards Taganak Island, so that local government officials in that area can attend to them,” Yongque said.

Yongque said the naval vessel spotted the wooden boat braving the high waves.  “Masyadong malalaki yung mga alon (The waves were too big),” he said.

“[They had very rough sailing] last night and they reached Taganak a bit late. But they are all safe,” he said.

He said the evacuees, mostly women and children, were on board the ML Fatima Editha III, a wooden-hulled boat.

Yongque said the Navy has sent a vessel to fetch the stranded evacuees.

From Taganak Island, the evacuees still have to travel some 540 kilometers of rough seas to reach Bongao town, capital of Tawi-Tawi. Taganak Island is some 40 kilometers away from Sabah.

Yongque said the evacuees on Taganak Island were being attended to by Mayor Nickerson Tan of nearby Mapun Island and Tawi-Tawi Vice Gov. Ruby Sahali-Tan.

But an officer of the Provincial Social Welfare Office in Tawi-Tawi told the Philippine Daily Inquirer that there were 512 individuals stranded in Taganak.

“We are waiting for the Navy to secure them and to bring them to Bongao so we can attend to them,” said the PSWDO officer, who asked not to be named as he was not authorized to speak on the matter.

Undersecretary Pombaen Kadir of the Department of Social Welfare Department in the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DSWD-ARMM) said almost a thousand individuals were monitored to have entered Philippine waters from Sabah.

“So far, we managed to serve about 700, including those on Taganak Island,” Kadir said.

Kadir said they have dispatched some 2,000 sacks of rice to the provinces of Sulu and Tawi-Tawi. “We have also shipped some 3,000 food bags, complete with amenities, including milk for children,” he added.

Kadir said most of the fleeing evacuees docked at the islands of Sulu and Tawi-Tawi.

But Kadir said not all of those who fled Sabah have been documented as “some immediately left without registering with the DSWD or the crisis center as soon as they arrived.”

Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter

Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Conflict , Diplomacy , evacuation , Features , Government , Maritime , navy , Regions , Security , sultanate , Territory

  • http://www.mmobux.com/ David Millon

    400 flippeons just got fired by Malaysian employee for their fellow countrymen atrocities.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/VS5EYSP4FPOTVQCJZ24NRE6Z2M Edgardo Mendoza

    genocide pilipinos malayshits

Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94


  • 2 killed in apparent Bahrain car bombing
  • SC suspends proctor in 2011 bar exams
  • At barricades, Ukraine insurgents await Easter
  • Solons seek ample protection for bank depositors
  • Tragedies at sea: The Sewol and the Costa Concordia
  • Sports

  • Tottenham beats Fulham 3-1 in Premier League
  • Martino defends Messi, takes blame for Barca fail
  • Vettel hoping for resurgence at Chinese GP
  • MLB pitcher donates $100,000 for Sewol ferry victims
  • Hamilton takes pole at Chinese Grand Prix
  • Lifestyle

  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Pro visual artists, lensmen to judge Pagcor’s photo contest
  • ‘Labahita a la bacalao’
  • Entertainment

  • Myx TV premieres Asian American ‘docu-series’
  • A nutty finale for ‘Scandal,’ TV’s craziest show
  • EXO postpones release of mini album ‘Overdose’
  • ‘X-men’ filmmaker slams ‘fabricated’ sex attack claims
  • Singer Chris Brown’s bodyguard on trial in DC
  • Business

  • Fiat-Chrysler to produce iconic Jeep in China from 2015
  • US commerce secretary spells out economic facet of ‘pivot to Asia’
  • Italy sells luxury state cars on eBay
  • Asian shares mostly up in quiet trade
  • Dollar up in Asia on US jobs data, Ukraine deal
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Editorial cartoon, April 17, 2014
  • A humbler Church
  • Deepest darkness
  • ‘Agnihotra’ for Earth’s health
  • It’s the Holy Week, time to think of others
  • Global Nation

  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • 5 Filipinos with MERS in UAE reported in stable condition
  • Marketplace