Quarry firm heeds gov't order, suspends operations in wake of Cebu landslide

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 22 2018 04:48 PM | Updated as of Sep 23 2018 11:03 AM

Rescue workers pull out a victim from the rubble after a landslide in Sitio Sindulan, Barangay Tina-an, Naga City in Cebu on Thursday, Sept. 20, 2018. Jojo Satuita, Cebu DNG

MANILA - A firm with quarrying rights in Naga City, Cebu where a deadly landslide struck earlier this week said Saturday it would suspend operations for the meantime in compliance with government orders.

Apo Land and Quarry Corp. (ALQC) said it would comply with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources' (DENR) cease and desist order to ensure public safety.

"...[I]n accordance with the directive of the DENR, ALQC will temporarily cease its operations and exert efforts at helping normalize the situation in affected areas," the firm said in a statement.

"The company will also cooperate with government investigation that may be conducted in relation to this incident," it added.

The DENR issued the order for select areas in the country after a landslide struck Naga City, leaving at least 29 people dead.

ALQC earlier said that while it held quarrying rights to the area where the landslide happened, it had yet to begin quarry operations there.

The firm added that its officials met with Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu and Naga City Mayor Kristine Chiong on Saturday and agreed to assist families affected by the landslide.

It said it had opened an evacuation facility in its gymnasium that currently houses around 300 individuals and had provided relief goods.

"ALQC has also established a care fund to financially assist families who lost their loved ones, as well as those who were injured during the unfortunate incident," it said.

The quarry firm added that it had committed to support Naga City's plans for the development of a permanent relocation site for those affected by the landslide.