The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) clarified news reports that came out yesterday and said today that only eight barangays in Tagaytay City are covered by its mandatory evacuation order and therefore businesses may reopen in other barangays.
DILG Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said that in Tagaytay, the PHIVOLCS listed eight of its barangays as susceptible to Base Surge and Volcanic Tsunami which is why they were included in the Mandatory Evacuation Order issued by the Department as early as Monday.
"Let me clarify that it's not the entire Tagaytay City but only 8 of its barangays were included by PHIVOLCS as within the Danger Zone, so business establishments may reopen in other areas of the city," he said.
He also clarified that as to these eight barangays, those located in the higher portion of the ridge may be allowed to reopen subject to the sound judgment of the Local Government of Tagaytay.
"Secretary Año has decided that those located in the higher portion of the ridge which based on the PHIVOLCS hazard map have low risk may be allowed to reopen by the Local Government Unit. So, it's subject to the discretion of the Mayor and she will be totally responsible," he said.
"We advise the Tagatay City Government to review the PHIVOLCS Hazard Maps so that they are properly guided in deciding which areas in these 8 barangays are safe for businesses to reopen. So in the meantime, it's now up to the LGU," he said.
Malaya said that they rely on PHIVOLCS on issues like this. "We are not the scientific experts here, its the DOST. We have requested the PHIVOLCS to issue the necessary written guidance to DILG on this matter," he said.
The eight barangays from Tagaytay are Bagong Tubig, Kaybagal South (Pob)., Maharlika West, Sambong, San Jose, Silang Junction South, Maharlika East, and Tolentino East.
Based on the latest reports from DILG field offices, only Bagong Tubig and Sambong has been evacuated. The other barangays only implemented voluntary evacuation.