8 still missing in quake-hit Makilala town

MAKILALA, North Cotabato (MindaNews / 04 November) — Eight persons in quake-hit Makilala have remained missing as of Monday noon, four days after the October 31 Magnitude 6.5 earthquake struck the area, an official said.

Board member Joemar Cerebo, spokesperson of the Cotabato emergency operations center, said in a telephone interview that rescuers are still searching for the missing persons as the death toll in the province since the October 16 6.3-magtinute quake reached 17.

Ranyfe Loma sifts through the possessions they salvaged from their house destroyed by the October 31 Magnitude 6.5 quake in Barangay Batasan, Makilala, North Cotabato in this photo taken on Friday, November 1, 2019. MindaNews photo by BONG S. SARMIENTO

Magnitudes 6.6 and 6.1 also struck on October 29 and two days later, Magnitude 6.5, all epicenters in North Cotabato.

Four of the missing individuals from Barangay Bato were identified as Renante Nudalo, Gace Nudalo, Freddie Bago and Jhonathan Lamar.

A team from the Armed Forces of the Philippines and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau will be deployed to Barangay Bato to locate the missing and assess the situation there, Cerebo said.

Fears have been expressed that they may have been buried by a landslide.

The four other missing persons are from Barangay Malasila, also in this town. They were Triump Picao, Rolando Acero, Rosalino Dayday, and one still unidentified person.

Cerebo said the temblors injured 271 individuals across the province, 82 of whom were admitted in hospitals while 189 suffered minor injuries.

The quakes destroyed 20,632 houses and damaged at least 5,000 others, he added.

Evacuees set up tents along the highway in Makilala, North Cotabato. MindaNews photo by GG Bueno

On Sunday, the Philippine Air Force rescued 15 residents and three dogs trapped for five days in Sitio Kapatagan, Barangay Luayon here.

Based on a meeting with the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology and and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau on Sunday, residents in several villages have been advised to relocate or evacuate, Cerebo said.

These include Barangays Bato, Buhay, Cabilao, Luayon, Sto. Nino (Purok 1 and 2), Malabuan (Purok 12, Sitio Basak), Poblacion (Purok Malaang), and Malungon (Purok 2 and 7) in Makilala; Barangays Daig (center), Bacong (selected houses near barangay hall) in Tulunan; Barangay New Esperanza (Sitio Byao) in M’lang; and barangay Ilomavis (Sitio Agco) in Kidapawan City, according to the Philippine Information Office-12. (Bong S. Sarmiento / MindaNews)