Lumad group urge MisOr to prioritize small-scale miners-A A +A
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
IN A memorandum of agreement (MOA) signed by the Provincial Government, Provincial Prosecutor’s Office and the Misamis Oriental Police Provincial Office, the parties agreed to implement the “cease and desist order to whoever is or are engaged” in any illegal quarrying activities in the province.
The MOA has been the concrete step that Provincial Government took to protect the environment against illegal sand and gravel quarry operators in the province.
Governor Yevgeny Emano said that illegal quarrying operations are actively operating in the province.
“As much as possible, kanang mga (those) illegal operators should get a permit. They will be bounded by law,” said Emano.
Emano added that through the MOA, quarry operators will get licenses and obey the policies that are created to keep the environment safe.
Josito Tilos, officer-in-charge of Environment and National Resources Office of Misamis Oriental (Enro-MisOr), said his office will check if the rivers are still conducive for sand and gravel quarrying so it will not cause damage to our environment.
Tilos added that there is no limit to the number of operators who will be granted the license to sand and gravel quarrying.
However, Jomorito Goaynon, chairperson of Kalumbay Regional Lumad Organization, said that the Provincial Government should prioritize the small-scale mining operators.
He added that illegal large-scale mining operators can afford to pay the fees needed to get a license.
“Pero ang mga small-scale miners nga naa mismo sa baranggay, dili na sila maka-afford sa permit (But the small-scale miners who are residents in the barangays can’t afford to pay the fees to get a license),” said Goaynon.
Goaynon said that some mining operators in the province are extracting gold under the guise of sand and gravel quarrying.
“Sa Iponan river, dili mana sand and gravel diha. Gold na ilang ginakuha (In the Iponan river, it is not sand and gravel quarrying. They are extracting gold), added Goaynon.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 24, 2013.