Illegal quarry ‘hurts’ Budlaan
A fallen mango tree and loose soil covered the mountain road in Barangay Budalaan, Cebu City, early on Tuesday, obstructing the flow of traffic in the area.
Half of the two-lane road was already passable to motorcycles and other smaller vehicles by 9 a.m.
Clearing of obstruction was completed later in the afternoon, said Nagiel Bañacia, head of the Cebu City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CCDRRMO).
A payloader placed on standby at the nearby Budlaan batching plant was used to clear the barangay road of the fallen tree and loose soil.
Bañacia said that Barangay Budlaan is among the landslide-prone areas in the city because of the presence of illegal quarry operations in the area.
He said that massive extraction of georhites, used for construction purposes, loosens soil in the barangay.
“Ang mga taw (Residents are) unmindful. They do not care about the illegal quarry operations. Gusto sila nga ang gobyerno ang modakop ana (They want to leave it to government to go after the illegal quarry operators),” he told Cebu Daily News.
Bañacia said the Cebu City Environment and Natural Resources Office (CCENRO) is now doing its best to go after illegal quarry operators in Budlaan, who would normally operate in the dark.
Until illegal quarry operations are stopped, Bañacia said Barangay Budlaan will continue to suffer from its unstable soil.
Budlaan barangay tanod Gino Arceo said loose soil started to erode into their barangay road around 4 a.m. on Tuesday as a result of raining that was experienced in the city in the last few days.
The landslide also uprooted a mango tree that was planted on an uphill farm owned by a certain Benjamin San, said Barangay Captain Nerissa Antolijao.
Arceo said passing motorcycle drivers reported the landslide to barangay officials around 4 a.m.
Bañacia said the landslide-affected area is located a few meters away from the government housing site in Barangay Budlaan.
Antolijao said she had long wanted a riprap built on the slopes in her barangay to lessen soil erosion but has not yet found funding for the purpose.
“Niduol na ko ani sa DPWH aron mabutangan og riprap pero wa ma’y budget maong wala pa (We already sought help from DPWH for the establishment of the needed riprap, but the agency still does not have funding for the purpose that is why the project was never implemented),” Antolihao said.
Pending the implementation of their barangay riprap project, Antolijao said she relies on the help of sitio leaders in keeping watch of soil erosion in their respective areas to especially avoid casualties.
Bañacia said existing ripraps in the barangays were destroyed by illegal quarry operations.
“Nganong wala man sila mamadlong sa nag-quarry (Why don’t they go after the quarry operators)? Maguba man gyud na ang riprap because they don’t care about the infrastructure,” Bañacia said.
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