UN, Philippine govt disagree on death toll
15 November 2013, 13:16
Manila - The United Nations said on Friday the death toll from a super typhoon in the Philippines was at least 4 460, citing regional officials, but the national disaster council maintained a much lower figure.
The UN's Office for the Co-ordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) said the number of 4 460 was given from the regional taskforce of the Philippines' National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council on Wednesday.
But NDRMMC's spokesperson Reynaldo Balido insisted the official toll from the typhoon that ripped through the central Philippines on 8 November remained at 2 360.
"As of 13 November, the government reported that 4 460 people have died," an OCHA statement said.
Asked for the source of the figures, Manila-based OCHA spokesperson Orla Fagan said:" We are getting it from the operations centre of the regional taskforce set up by the NDRMMC."
When asked about the UN's statement: Balido replied: "Not true". Then repeated the NDRMMC's published figure of 2 360.
Philippine President Benigno Aquino said on Tuesday that he estimated the final death toll would be around 2 500.