Mamuju, W Sulawesi (ANTARA) - The Mamuju district government's assessment team has commenced its work on validating data on the local residents' houses damaged by a strong earthquake that hit early this year.

"The assessment team members will work for 20 days to complete the process of validating data on all affected houses to provide more accurate data," Mamuju District Head Sutinah Suhardi Duka remarked.

The assessment team has 100 personnel recruited from various related agencies, including the local police and military, Duka notified local journalists here, Tuesday.

The team is expected to function in a professional manner in validating data on the incurred damage, so that eligible residents can soon receive assistance funds from the National Disaster Mitigation Agency (BNPB) to repair or rebuild their damaged houses, according to the district head.

The agency has offered Rp209 billion for disbursal to the owners of 9,179 damaged houses, Duka remarked.

The districts of Mamuju and Majene were rattled by a 6.2-magnitude earthquake, ensued by several aftershocks, on January 15, 2021.

The catastrophe claimed over 100 lives and acutely impacted several residents in sub-districts, such as Mamuju, Tapalang, Tapalang Barat, Simboro Kepulauan, Kalukku, and Bonehau.

Earthquakes regularly hit various parts of Indonesia since the country lies on the Circum-Pacific Belt, also known as the Ring of Fire, where several tectonic plates meet and cause frequent volcanic and seismic activities.

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Sulawesi Island has repeatedly borne witness to deadly earthquakes. On September 28, 2018, for instance, a 7.4-magnitude earthquake hit several parts of Central Sulawesi Province.

The strong earthquake that was followed by a tsunami and soil liquefaction in Palu, the capital of Central Sulawesi Province, claimed 2,102 lives, injured 4,612, and rendered 680 others missing.

A total of 68,451 homes incurred serious damage, while 78,994 people were displaced.

The authorities and humanitarian workers decided to bury the large number of rotting corpses in mass graves. Indonesia's deadliest earthquake hit Banda Aceh and several other parts of Aceh Province on December 26, 2004.

The undersea megathrust earthquake that triggered a deadly giant tsunami destroyed several parts of the city in the northernmost tip of Sumatra Island and reportedly killed some 170 thousand residents.
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Translator: M.Faisal H, Rahmad Nasution
Editor: Fardah Assegaf
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