SLOPING AREA. A landslide in Sitio Sadsadan in Barangay Maybunga, Laua-an in Antique. Laua-an Mayor Aser Baladjay on Wednesday (Sept. 14, 2022) urged residents to evacuate because of the danger. (Photo courtesy of Antique PIO)

SAN JOSE DE BUENAVISTA, Antique – The mayor of the northern municipality of Laua-an in Antique province has asked residents in a landslide-affected sitio (hamlet) to evacuate due to the danger of another soil erosion due to recurring rains.

Mayor Aser Baladjay said on Wednesday that when they visited Sitio Sadsadan in Barangay Maybunga together with personnel from the Antique Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO), Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) on Tuesday, they found out that the ongoing landslide has already affected almost 2.7 hectares of sloping area.

“The landslide was first reported on Sept. 11 to the mayor’s office right after it happened,” Baladjay said.

During their inspection, another landslide occurred due to rains every afternoon, prompting the mayor to order the barangay captain to urge four households to immediately vacate their house and temporarily stay with their relatives. The homes are directly on the path of another possible landslide.

The local government unit said it is ready to give the families food packs and provide for their other needs.

“I am now coordinating with the Sunwest Water and Electric Company, Inc. (SUWECO) which has a turbine in the area to assist us by letting their backhoe and other heavy equipment clear the rocks and soil due to the landslide that covers the concrete access road and a portion of Paliwan River,” Baladjay said, adding the clearing operations may take a month.

The mayor said that the sloping area where the landslide occurred is nearby the Paliwan River, which was swamped with rocks and soil and can cause an overflow and affect the sitio's 60 households.

“SUWECO, upon my request to assist in the clearing operation, is just waiting though for the Antique PDRRMO and MGB to allow it since there is still an ongoing landslide,” Baladjay said.

In a separate interview, PDRRMO chief Broderick Train said no reported injury or casualty during the two recent landslides.

“We are still waiting for the MGB's finding on the real cause of the landslide and its recommendations,” he said. (PNA)