Evacuees told not to go home, Kanlaon eruptions still likely 

Negros  Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson, accompanied by Mayor Rhummyla Nicor Mangilimutan , visits an evacuation center  in La Castellana Wednesday morning.*Richard Malihan photo

More than a thousand residents remained in evacuation centers in La Carlota City and La Castellana, Negros Occidental, on Wednesday, June 5,    amid fears that Kanlaon Volcano could still erupt. 

Negros Occidental Gov. Eugenio Jose Lacson said the evacuees from villages at the foot of the volcano have been asked to remain in the evacuation   centers while Alert Level 2 remains over Kanlaon. 

“We are waiting for it to be downgraded to Alert Level 1” so residents can go home, he said. 

Although Kanlaon has quieted down following the volcano’s eruption on Monday night, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said Alert Level 2 remains, which means there is probable intrusion of magma at depth, which may or may not lead to a magmatic eruption. 

Lacson said he has also directed the Office of the Provincial Agriculturist to assess damage to farmlands. 

The governor said he visited the evacuation sites in La Castellana and La Carlota City on Wednesday to ensure that the evacuees needs have been addressed. The provincial government has delivered food packs, water and medicines, he said. 

There is no need for the Negros Occidental provincial government to declare a state of calamity as it has adequate funds to assist the evacuees, he said. 

La Castellana Mayor Rhummyla Nicor Mangilimutan said there were 232 families with   978  

members still in evacuation centers in her town as of noon Wednesday. 

Farms lands in nine barangays in La Castellana have been affected by ash fall, six of which were heavily hit, she said. They are still assessing the extent of the damage, she added. 

She said a state of calamity was declared in her town to ensure price controls. She said a day after the volcano erupted stores jacked up the price of face masks to P4 each. 

She said although Kanlaon looks calm evacuees have been asked not to return home as based on the volcano’s history once it erupts there are follow up explosions. 

La Carlota Mayor Rex Jalandoon said there are 64 families with 256 members in evacuation centers in his city. 

He does not believe a state of calamity needs to be declared in La Carlota but is still waiting for an assessment report on the extent of the damage. 

He said the eruption affected barangays Yubo and Araal that were hit with ash fall and sulfurous odor.* 

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