Flood victims live off rainwater-soaked noodles

By Nazri Abdullah
Dec 29, 2014

Deprived of proper food, victims stranded in the country’s worst flood in decades have resorted to desperate measures to fill their growling stomachs.

Even those politically connected are not spared from the national disaster, which has displaced more than 225,000 people, as Annual Bakri Harun can testify.

Annual, a former political secretary to ex-Kelantan menteri besar Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat, said he was forced to soak instant noodles in rain water for food.

“I have lived in the dark for the last five days and have only been eating biscuits.

“There are instant noodles, but no electricity to boil water and the stove is not working.

“Out of hunger, I was forced to collect rain water with my bare hands and pour them into the instant noodle cup.

“Imagine cooking instant noodles with cold rain water,” Annual told Malaysiakini when met at his residence in Kampung Wakaf Zain, Bachok.

Annual’s house was inundated with water, 60cm deep, last Wednesday and has remained flooded for five days now.

‘Fruitless hunt for rice’

In the five days, he said, he has only eaten rice once after his neighbour generously shared some with him.

Annual said he had braved strong currents, with water up to his waist, several times to search for rice but to no avail.

The loss of property has also been significant for Annual, as his Mercedes and Perodua Viva vehicles sit in the muddy water.

He said the water had risen rapidly, giving his family little time to save anything.

Annual has since sent off his wife and children to his parents’ home where they would be safe, but is worried about leaving his house.

For now, he is keeping watch over the house alone, with only his pets for company.

A frustrated Annual said the slow pace of aid from the authorities to reach flood victims was disappointing.

“Before this, I had to eat stale biscuits, which are shared with my cat, chicken and bird,” he said.

However, there was a glimmer of hope for Annual and his fellow villagers yesterday as a volunteer NGO, Darul Hijrah, arrived to distribute food and supplies.

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