KORONADAL CITY - A state of calamity has been declared in South Cotabato's town of Surallah amid the continuing increase of dengue cases in the area, an official said Thursday.
Leonardo Ballon, Surallah disaster risk reduction and management office (MDRRMO) chief, said Thursday that the calamity status came after the clustering of dengue cases in at least three barangays.
"From January until the first week of June we have recorded 50 dengue cases, and it is still increasing. We are now on the alert level, so we asked for the declaration of a state of calamity for us to conduct specific activities to combat the spread of dengue," Ballon said in an interview.
Ballon said Barangay Dajay has recorded the most dengue cases with 20, followed by Centrala and Buenavista.
He said the local government has put in place preventive measures to curb a dengue outbreak in the municipality.
"We have already conducted fogging and intensified information education campaign in Barangay Dajay," Ballon said.
Ballon said the spike in dengue cases this year can be attributed to the increase in rainfall during this month, prompting the local government to intensify its clean-up drive.
"During the rainy season, there is a lot of stagnant water here that is a breeding area for dengue-carrying mosquitoes," Ballon said, noting that the last time a state of calamity was declared in Surallah due to dengue cases was in 2019.
In a separate interview, Dr. Rogelio Aturdido Jr, chief of the South Cotabato integrated provincial health office, said 2022 is an "endemic year" for dengue cases.
A dengue outbreak occurs cyclically in South Cotabato every three years, he said. (PNA)