TACLOBAN CITY- A passenger ferry capsized off the waters of Southern Leyte on September 13, killing several of its passengers. The MV Maharlika, a roll-on/roll-of vessel, was carrying 114 passengers, was bound for Lipata, Surigao from a ferry terminal in Liloan, Southern Leyte. But with strong winds and rains buffeting the vessel caused it to sink off Binit Point, Panaoan Island, Southern Leyte. As of Sept.15, out of the 114 passengers, six were confirmed to have died which was expected to increase as several passengers were still missing.

The strong winds and rains experienced at that time were due to the prevailing typhoon (Luis). Southern Leyte Governor Roger Mercado hours after the sinking incident, reported of three casualties, Rahima Ismael,20, from Zamboanga; Armando Mosqueda, 64 years old of Cagayan de Oro city; and a female passenger whose identity was not known.
Jonas Plasabas Maco, chapter administrator of Philippine Red in Southern Leyte, reported the initial list of 28 survivors from capsized boat Maharlika 2 rescued by Maharlika 4, through the coordination of its partner Red Cross chapter in Surigao city.

Rescued are: Jesse Buhos (Ormoc); Roel Mallen (Davao); Trestan Mallen (Davao); Ronald Villariez (Pampanga); Richie Cagas(Davao); Gerald Tocoyo (Batangas); Vicente Adolfo (Capiz); Raul Acero (Gen. Santos city); Roselito Tabon (Liloan, So. Leyte); Armando Glaban (Misamiz Oriental); Rodney Calibuyot (Panabo); Emer Llegue (Samar); Ma. Isabel Llegue (Samar); Quenciano Presilda (Tagum city); Christian Balili(Davao); Dennis Rodas (Mandaluyong); Dexter Nieves(Mandaluyong); Jesse Saberon(Laguna); Jerson Sembrano (Cebu); Jaype Agoho(Batangas); Erwin Reyes(Batangas); Sonny Noyles(Batangas); Ruth Balani(Cavite); Justin Alamo(Cavite); Etta Mesias(Cantilan); Melanie Boti (Davao); Ruth Quibol(Tandag); and Peter John Delos Santos(Capiz). The Philippine Red Cross Southern Leyte and Surigao del Norte chapters provided first aid and assessment during the incident. (RONALD O.REYES)