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Davao de Oro readies temporary relocation sites for Masara landslide victims

DAVAO DE ORO (PIA) -- The provincial government of Davao de Oro is now preparing the temporary relocation sites for the affected families of the Masara landslide, as schools used as evacuation centers will hold regular classes soon.

Davao de Oro Governor Dorothy Montejo-Gonzaga emphasized that, per policy of the Department of Education (DepEd), school facilities may be used as emergency evacuation sites for a maximum of 15 days.

The governor is referring to Deped Order No. 37, series of 2022, which highlights the guidelines on the cancellation or suspension of classes and work in schools in the event of natural disasters, power outages or interruptions, and other calamities.

“Para din dahan-dahan may normalcy na sa mga buhay nila; at kailangan kasi delikado pa ‘yong lugar nila,” Gonzaga said.

[It's also for them to slowly regain normalcy in their lives; and because their area is still dangerous.]

The identified temporary relocation sites were the half-hectare property of the Diocese of Tagum in Barangay Elizalde and a two-hectare area in Barangay Malamudaw, Maco.

After the conference with the Mines and Geoscience Bureau (MGB), Davao de Oro Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer Joseph Randy Loy said that the experts have cleared and gave a go-signal for the Diocese of Tagum property as a  temporary relocation site.

Governor Dorothy Montejo-Gonzaga presides the emergency response cluster meeting for the Masara Landslide on February 12 at the Provincial Capitol. (Photo: PIO)

Loy added that the property in Malamudaw is subjected to further assessment as MGB personnel have concerns in the area, like the adjacent river.

“As of the moment, temporary pa rin yong tinitignan natin to address the needs of the schools and we don’t want the education ng bata ay maantala,” he stressed.

[As of the moment, we are still looking at temporary solutions to address the needs of the schools, and we don’t want the children's education to be disrupted.]

The provincial government is now preparing the area for the temporary relocation site of the Masara landslide evacuees. This area is a half hectare property of the Diocese of Tagum located in Barangay Elizalde, Maco town. (Photo: PIO)

He said that the MGB will provide the provincial government with alist of permanent relocation sites once they are done assessing the areas.

On the temporary relocation sites, Loy said that tents will be put up as shelters for the affected families.

As to the number of evacuees that will be accommodated, he said that they still need to compute the size of the area, considering the other facilities to be placed like latrines and kitchens.

According to the Municipal Social Welfare and Development Office (MSWDO), there are 1,345 families, or 4,572 individuals, taking temporary shelter at the 10 evacuation centers in Mawab town.

The displaced families included those from nearby villages who were forced to be evacuated due to the threats posed by the landslides.

According to the February 15 7:00PM report from MDRRMO Maco, the operatives rescued a total of 32 individuals, retrieved 90 bodies and body parts, and are still searching for 36 missing persons. (MLU/PIA Davao de Oro)

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Michael Uy

Regional Editor / Writer

Region 11

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