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Over 20K Canlaon City residents affected by Kanlaon Volcano eruption — mayor

Kanlaon Volcano eruption Canlaon City

More than 20,000 residents in Canlaon City in Negros Oriental have been affected by the unrest of  Kanlaon Volcano, Mayor Jose Chubasco Cardenas said Wednesday.

“Yung apektado na indibidwal dito sa evacuation center namin is 156 and they are 43 families kumbaga. Pero ang apektado na mga nakatira sa limang barangay within Mount Kanlaon area is 20,300 plus individuals yung mga affected,” Cardenas said at a public briefing.

(The affected individuals here in our evacuation center are at 156 or 143 families. But the number of affected residents in the five barangays within the Mount Kanlaon area is at 20,300 plus individuals.)

Canlaon City has been placed under state of calamity following the eruption of Kanlaon Volcano on Monday, which lasted six minutes and was followed by a relatively strong volcanic-tectonic earthquake.

Cardenas explained that there were supposedly over 370 residents near the volcano who were recommended to go to the evacuation center, but half of them decided to stay with their relatives in the city instead.

“Yung una, yung ginamit natin yung mga evacuation centers natin sa mga barangay mismo na kung taga saan sila, nakita natin na hindi feasible dahil yung amoy ng sulfur, malalanghap nila….Tapos yung iba, half of them, pumunta sa mga bahay ng kamag-anak nila,” he said.

(At first, we used the evacuation centers in their respective barangays. However, it was not feasible for them to stay there because they can inhale the sulfur…While the others, half of them, decided to go to their relatives instead.)

Meanwhile, the Department of Social Welfare and Development Undersecretary Edu Punay said that  there are currently 426 families or 1,414 individuals in four cities in Negros Occidental (Bago, La Carlota, La Castellana) and Negros Oriental (Canlaon) in 11 evacuation centers.

The DSWD added that P1.4 million worth of food and non-food items have been distributed so far to all affected individuals.

Further, an emergency cash assistance for recovery up to P15,000 would be given to affected people after the calamity.

“Nakadepende yan sa assessment ng social worker, depende kasi yan kung magkano yung damage na nabigay sa mga individual. May range po ito na up to P15,000 per beneficiary,” said Punay in a public briefing.

(The amount will depend on the assessment of the social worker. It also depends on the damage experienced by the individual. We can give up to P15,000 per beneficiary.)

Work suspension lifted

On the other hand, Cardenas on Wednesday also issued an executive order lifting the work suspension in government and private offices in the city.

“The situation has been assessed and deemed safe for the resumption of activities, however, entrance to the Kanlaon’s four-kilometer-radius Permanent Danger Zone (PDZ) is strictly prohibited,” EO No. 37 read.

“Further, all concerned agencies are hereby directed to resume operations in compliance with existing labor laws and regulations, and the public is advised to remain vigilant,” the EO added.

The local government of Canlaon City on Tuesday suspended the work in the city as a  “precautionary and pro-active measure in anticipation of any untoward incident.”

But Cardenas said in a public briefing that tourist activities will remain suspended. — RSJ, GMA Integrated News