By Kier Edison C. Belleza
BOLJOON, Cebu – Local officials placed 6 barangays here under state of calamity following incessant landslides that have forced at least 300 residents to flee their homes.
Ruben Niere, Boljoon Public Information Officer, identified the barangays as Lower Becerril, Upper Becerril, Nangka, Lunop, San Antonio and Poblacion.
Though admitting it was only Barangay Lower Becerril that was directly affected by the landslide that occurred Oct. 27, Niere said it was necessary to place the other five villages under state of calamity as they are all connected by a 15-km road since rendered inaccessible.
Niere said at least 18 families from Sitio Calfranco and SitioSangi have been relocated as of Friday.
“They are prioritized since they abandoned their houses,” he said.
The Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) in Central Visayas subsequently recommended declaring Barangay Lower Becerril a “permanent danger zone” and “no habitation zone.”
“The area has a very high landslide susceptibility rating by the Geohazards Mapping and Assessment Team of MGB-7,” MGB said.
Meanwhile, boulders and uprooted trees are still blocking the flow of Lusopan River.
MGB-7 warned Barangay Poblacion may be at risk if the debris in that portion of the river is not removed.
Authorities are still clearing the river as of this writing.
“Should there be rapid change in water level, the DRRM is advised to alert the residents in Calfranco and Poblacion to avoid any untoward incident,” MGB recommended.