I managed to speak to Fr. Michael Tavoa who looks after our Mission to Seafarers office in Vila. He confirmed that much of the communication system is still down and only slowly coming back. Power and water has been cut off since Friday and most of the shops are still closed with few opening only to clean up. Only one of the bigger supermarkets and two petrol stations have opened so far. People are getting by with whatever is left from the destroyed fruit trees. Our offices in Santo and our two dioceses of Vanuatu and Banks and Torres cannot be reached as yet. We understand telecommunication system is still being restored. As to the extent of the cyclone, Fr. Tavoa said “he hasn’t seen anything like it before. It just rushed and tore through the whole town” . He said the roof of the apartment he’s living in was also blown off. People are still living in Evacuation centres with the Tagabe parish also being used to house victims of the cyclone.
Here in the Solomons, a ship is currently in Temotu and will be travelling to the affected islands in the next day or two to carry out an assessment.
We will keep you updated once we can get more information.