Lawmaker upset over case dismissal-A A +A
Thursday, November 1, 2012
CAGAYAN DE ORO Representative Rufus Rodriguez (second district) expressed dismay over the dismissal of the cases filed against the two Chinese nationals who were arrested last week for allegedly doing illegal mining in the hinterland barangays of Cagayan de Oro.
Rodriguez said he will immediately file a resolution for a house inquiry about the case as soon as Congress resumes on November 5.
“They were arrested in the area where the barges are located and yet what evidence are needed?” he told Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro.
The cases filed against Zong Hengyuan, 43, and He Jiancheng, 42, both residents of the People’s Republic of China, for violation of the Philippine Mining Act, Republic Act 7076 or the People’s Small-Scale Mining Act of 1991, and Executive Order 074-2012 issued by City Mayor Vicente Emano prohibiting and stopping all mining operations along Iponan River, were dismissed by the City Prosecutor’s Office on Monday.
City State Prosecutor Fidel Macauyag said the case was dismissed due to insufficiency of evidences.
Macauyag said the complaint, which was filed by environment group Sulog, lacked the affidavits of the arresting officer and the officials from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).
He said the complaint may suffice had the DENR submitted a letter recommending the case filed by Sulog.
“The filing of the complaint did not carry the imprimatur by the DENR or any of its authorized representatives. The complaint lack the participation of the DENR, the government agency mandated by law to implement the Philippine Mining Act,” Macauyag said.
He, however, said the three cases were “dismissed without prejudice,” which means these can still be filed back provided all the necessary documents are submitted
Rodriguez said he will call on the DENR, the city prosecutor, the City Government, the Bureau of Immigration and the Department of Labor and Employment (Dole) to answer and explain the unabated illegal mining in the city.
He said he wants to know why the suspects were able to work with only a “leisure visa.”
The two Chinese nationals were arrested during a raid in a barge in Sitio Araw-Araw, along Barangay Pagalungan in Cagayan de Oro City Thursday last week.
During investigation, the foreigners failed to show any working visa. They only hold tourist visas.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on November 02, 2012.