Kanlaon evacuees must stay until volcano calms down

Life continues for farmers of Canlaon City, Negros Oriental on June 6, 2024. (Ricky D. Alejo photo)

By Dolly Yasa

BACOLOD CITY – Mayor Rhummyla Mangilimutan of La Castellana in Negros Occidental said that internally displaced persons (IDPs) affected by the recent eruption of Kanlaon volcano will not be allowed to return home until the Alert Level decreases.

Mangilimutan confirmed that Alert Level 2 is still in place.

Data from the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction Management Office of Negros Occidental showed that 783 families, composed of 2,992 persons, are still occupying five evacuation centers in La Castellana.

Mangilimutan reiterated, “Until the alert level is downgraded and the heavy rains, which may trigger lahar flow, stop, the internally displaced persons (IDPs) will have to stay at evacuation centers.”

The mayor earlier stated that 488 families, composed of 1,362 individuals, from Brgy. Mansalanao, La Castellana, have returned to their respective homes.

She explained that this is because their village is not within the permanent danger zone.

The mayor said that the IDPs are residents of the barangays Biak Na Bato, Cabacungan, Cabagna-an, Camandag, Masulog, and Sag-ang, all in La Castellana.

The villages of Biak Na Bato, Cabagna-an, and Masulog are located within the four-kilometer Permanent Danger Zone of Kanlaon volcano.

Currently, only five evacuation centers remain active after 488 families were allowed to return home.

Meanwhile, Mangilimutan urged private groups wanting to extend help to affected residents of La Castellana to coordinate with the local government unit.

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