A TOTAL of 54 fishing boats were damaged as a result of Friday’s 7.2-magnitude earthquake in General Santos City and Sarangani province, the Department of Agriculture (DA) said on Sunday.

So far, only the fisheries sector has reported damage as a result of the tremor, which included pavement cracks at fish landing sites in Malapatan, Sarangani.

In addition, a DA building at the Prime Regional Government Center in Koronadal City was also damaged.

Since Agriculture Secretary Francisco T. Laurel, Jr. directed agencies of the department in Mindanao to assess the earthquake’s damage to farm infrastructure last Saturday, the DA has not yet received such reports that could hinder the food supply system.

The DA said it was still in the process of assessing, evaluating, and coordinating with various agencies for a complete its impact assessment and determine what assistance farmers and fishermen adversely affected by the quake would need.

“We are ready to extend assistance so that our stakeholders could quickly recover from this disaster,” Mr. Laurel said last Saturday. — Justine Irish D. Tabile