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13 Feb 2024

Rappler, Dennis Jay Santos

Philippines: Environmentalist groups urge Govt. for investigation following landslide; death toll rose to 68, 51 still missing

"Calls for probe, shutdown of mining firm grow after Davao de Oro landslide", 13 February 2024

Environmentalist groups pressed the government for an investigation and demanded a halt to mining operations in Davao de Oro in the wake of the February 6 landslide at a mining village in Masara, Maco town.

A week after the landslide, the number of corpses dug at the landslide site rose to 68, but the search has continued for 51 others who were reported missing.

The group, the Kalikasan People’s Network for the Environment (Kalikasan PNE), said the government should thoroughly investigate and determine the extent of accountability of the mining company, Apex Mining Corporation. 

Kalikasan PNE Coordinator Jon Bonifacio told Rappler that the catastrophic Masara landslide showed how the worsening impact of climate change has been intersecting with “corporate negligence and impunity in the country.”

“Apex Mining and other mining companies in Mindanao have clearly endangered the lives of hundreds [of people],” Bonifacio said.

Another group of environmentalists, the Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM), called for a stop to destructive mining operations in communities across the country, pointing out that the “steep costs of mining to the environment and people’s lives are not worth any of its purported benefits” especially during floods and heavy rain.


The progressive group Bayan Muna said Apex should be held liable for the incident, alleging that the damage its operations did to the environment was what caused the landslide.