3 persons nabbed for cutting mahogany trees

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Friday, February 21, 2014


WHILE the ongoing reforestation and livelihood programs are starting to gain momentum, three suspected illegal loggers from the hinterland communities were arrested while cutting trees in Barangay Dansolihon, Cagayan de Oro City.

Edwin Dael, chief of the City Local Environment and Natural Resources Office (Clenro), said the illegal loggers attempted to flee from the composite team of Clenro and law enforcers.

He said they caught the perpetrators red-handed while cutting mahogany trees that range from 60 to 80 centimeters in diameter. Upon the team’s arrival, around 20 trees were already cut.

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He suspected that village officials are involved in the illegal logging operations.

At press time, Dael said his team is digging more information to validate the possible involvement of some barangay officials.

In a text message sent to this paper by the city’s information office, the perpetrators are now languishing at the city jail in Lumbia.

“The Perpetrators are now at Lumbia jail and filing appropriate charges will take place this morning,” the text message sent to Sun.Star on Thursday read.

The truck used by the illegal loggers has been impounded and placed under the supervision of the city engineering office.

Livelihood

Reforestation and livelihood programs as an alternative income generation for the alleged illegal loggers in the hinterland communities started last week, said Dael.

Dael added the livelihood program was granted to the residents in the upland villages to prevent them from destroying the environment to earn.

In an interview last week, Dael said it is difficult to stop the illegal logging and mining operations in far-flung communities if livelihood will not be granted to them.

Dael said last February 13 and 14 their office conducted an information and education campaign (IEC) in Tagpangi and Dansolihon villages and it will continue to other villages within the month.

He said the people were oriented on raising seedlings that will be bought from the funds of the project.

The seedlings will involve coffee beans, rubber tree, fruit trees like durian, and firewood trees like ipil-ipil.

The price range of the seedlings would range from P15 to P35 with fruit trees as the most expensive while the firewood trees at the least.

He added the beneficiaries of the project would also plant dipterocarp trees for the reforestation of the area.

In the land preparation for the project, the residents would be paid for their efforts.

“When making the layout of the nursery and the uprooting of grasses that are destructive to the seedlings, and while taking care of the seedlings until ready for selling, the beneficiaries will get paid,” Dael said.

He said the beneficiaries of the nursery establishment project would comprise six groups from the hinterland villages.

Dael added the beneficiaries will be granted P50,000 per group so they can buy the materials needed for the nursery which is a good start up capital for the business to roll.

Following the Community Based Forest Management Program, the land target for reforestation will be granted to the beneficiaries for 25 years.

He added that if they will see that the land was developed the grant would be renewed for another 25 years.

Dael said the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) would also provide eight sets of primary processing facility for bamboo craft.

He added that a set is composed of: one unit bamboo cutter, two units external node remover, 2 units bamboo slice machine and one unit dryer. The first set was already delivered to Dansolihon.

Dael said the project amounts to P290,000.

Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on February 21, 2014.

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