Taal Volcano Island to be declared 'no man's island'

Third Anne Peralta-Malonzo

INTERIOR and Local Government Secretary Eduardo Año said on Wednesday, January 15, that President Rodrigo Duterte has approved his recommendation to declare the Taal Volcano Island as a “no man’s island” amid its continuous eruption and the risk of a major hazardous explosion.

"Yes, it was approved by PRRD [President Rodrigo Roa Duterte] but it would be gradual until relocation for settlers is prepared," he said.

During their visit to the affected families in an evacuation center on Tuesday, January 14, Defense Secretary Delfin Lorenzana suggested to Duterte that the island be declared as a “no man’s island”.

Año said he noted that the continuous eruption and volcanic quakes could lead to a more destructive event.

"Huwag na tayong magpabalik ng tao doon dahil if there will be another explosion na more violent, I think all people there will perish in that island, Sir," Lorenzana told the President.

Duterte has urged the residents not to return to their homes on the island.

The government’s disaster response council said nearly 50,000 families have been affected and are taking temporary shelters in evacuation centers. (SunStar Philippines)