On 16th, 29th, and 31st of October 2019, a series of strong earthquakes jolted Cotabato province with magnitude 6.3, 6.6, and 6.5 respectively. The epicenter was located east of Tulunan municipality, Cotabato. The municipalities of Tulunan and Makilala, and the City of Kidapawan were among the areas that were greatly affected.
Due to consecutive occurrences of earthquake, severe damage to and destruction of houses, private and government infrastructures were reported as well as scores of casualties. Government institutions have mobilized their resources to provide aid to the victims. Non-government organizations conducted assessment and response activities, and private institutions and individuals donated relief assistance.
In Kidapawan City, a total of 2,536 families were affected, and as of November 21, are staying in 21 designated evacuation sites. On October 29, 2019, forced evacuation was conducted in Sitios Embasi, Lapan, Bagong Silang, Sumayahon, and Imbag in Bar - s which make them unsafe for habitation, according to the assessment conducted by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (CDRRMO) of Kidapawan.
In Makilala municipality, out of 38 barangays, 4 barangays were confirmed by MGB Region XII - :
Barangays Cabilao, Luayon, Bato, and Buhay.
In Tulunan municipality, a total of 11, 886 families were affected. According to the Municipal Social Welfare Officer, one (1) person reportedly died and 53 individuals were injured. A total of 346 families were affected in Barangay Daig; 219 families in Barangay Magbok; and 226 families in Barangay Paraiso. As of November 21, all of them are staying in temporary shelters and/or tents near their houses. No evacuation centers were designated in Tulunan due to major damage to every infrastructure. A geohazard assessment was conducted in the affected barangays by the MGB, together with the Municipal Engineering Department of Tulunan and Municipal Risk Reduction Management Offices (MDRRMO). Based on this, Barangays Daig, Paraiso, and Magbok, and a few sitios in Barangays Bacong and Banayal, were declared No-Build Zones.
The Commission on Human Rights (CHR) Region XII also conducted assessments in the following barangays: Perez and Ilomavis (Kidapawan); Cabilao, Old Bulatukan, Batasan and Biangan in Makilala; Daig, Paraiso and Magbok in Tulunan.
Among the pressing needs of the IDPs are strong tents that will serve as temporary shelters, psychosocial interventions, potable water supply, medicines, and materials for temporary learning shelters. The local government units also need to identify suitable relocation sites for the affected population previously residing in the -Build Zones.