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Flashflood hits city, MMT sets probe on firms’ ECC compliance

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MALAYBALAY CITY (BukidnonNews.Net/01 October 2021) The Multipartite Monitoring Team (MMT) of the City Government of Malaybalay will inspect water ways along the path of Thursday’s flashflood that hit subdivisions here.

Maria Anita Fernandez, chief of the City Environment and Natural Resources Office, said part of the purpose is to check the compliance of companies operating in the area for their commitments in their Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC).

She clarified they will check the flooded areas, including canals of the subdivisions affected. They will also visit two agricultural plantations and a road construction project, located next to the affected areas. All three firms have ECCs. 

Fernandez said they will consider many factors. Apart from the ECC compliance, they will also check if another problem is too narrow canals in subdivisions.

Residents took to social media their ordeal with photos and videos documenting the flood on Thursday afternoon, which turned some roads into waterways, invaded houses, and destroyed properties. 

The City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office, in its incident report to the Office of Civil Defense today, cited no casualties or injuries of the flood after heavy rains from a thunderstorm reported in Mindanao. Although they did not quantify, they cited damage to houses, appliances, clothing, and livestock.  

Alan J. Comiso, City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Officer, cited in the report that they deployed teams to five puroks or zones in Brgy. Casisang and one in Brgy. 9. The CDRRMO also cited a report about children who were reportedly carried by floodwater in Kalawaig Creek but were rescued by residents. 

In Purok 20 in Brgy. Casisang, one of those affected was the family of contractual worker “SDJ”. The flood damaged food, appliances, furniture and other belongings. He said they have experienced flooding in the area for four times before but this one was the worst.

He said a road project in the upper area of their government-constructed subdivision was partly to be blamed because no canal was built yet. He said water also came from agricultural plantations in the area.    The flood, he said, destroyed seven houses in the NHA-Phase 3 Subdivision.

“Ila unta ma aksyunan kining klase sa pag apaw sa tubig dili lng kini kaisa o kaduha nahitabo kon dili kadaghan na. Ila sad unta tutukan kini nga problema,” (They should act on this overflow of water because it has happened more than twice already. They should also focus solving this problem) he said.
 
Comiso told BukidnonNews.Net Friday water came from the upper area and flowed to Purok 20 and Purok 17.  He said they need to unclog culverts on Saturday.

Fernandez said for firms with ECC, one of the conditions is to establish measures during the construction phase to prevent environmental damages.  

Kris Guerero Tabernero, chief of the Environment Management Division of City ENRO, said the MMT monitoring is routine function after the occurrence of incidents like flooding to validate the contribution of (ECC holders like) plantations. The MMT monitors each ECC holder every year, he said, adding, the regular schedule of monitoring local plantations is in the last quarter, timed for the rainy days. BukidnonNews.Net was unable to obtain the results of the previous MMT monitoring visits as of Oct.1.  

During the monitoring visit in plantations, he said, they will check the measures implemented like canals, catch basins, and silt traps if still functional.

“We can see if it malfunctioned and if it was the cause of the flood,” he said. 

“SDJ” said they have to move on even if going through that experience was very difficult during the pandemic.

“(Hopefully, something can be done to solve this). We can’t sleep well if this remains longer, especially in the rainy season,” he added.

The MMT scheduled the monitoring visits on Tuesday, October 5, 2021. (BukidnonNews.Net) 

IN PHOTOS: A portion of the damage in Purok 17, Brgy. Casisang, Malaybalay City/Courtesy of CDRRMO FB Account  

Outside one of the houses affected in Purok 20, Brgy. Casisang, Malaybalay City

Outside one of the houses affected in Purok 20, Brgy. Casisang, Malaybalay City

Inside one of the houses affected in Purok 20, Brgy. Casisang, Malaybalay City

Inside one of the houses affected in Purok 20, Brgy. Casisang, Malaybalay City

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

CDRRMO photo

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