Editorial: Mining in Iponan River-A A +A
Monday, October 29, 2012
THE arrest last week of Chinese nationals and the subsequent closure of at least four barges that were allegedly doing mining activities along the Iponan River clearly showed that mining is, indeed, one cause of heavy flooding at the height of last year’s “Sendong” that killed thousands of people and damaged billions worth of properties.
The raiding team from the military, Philippine National Police and the Department of Environment and Natural Resources reportedly found “damning evidence” that these barges are into mining, including the discovery of firearms that were allegedly used by the foreigners in “intimidating” local residents.
What is so alarming is that the financier of these illegal activities is a Filipino-Chinese who resides in Cagayan de Oro, based on the confession of one of the Chinese nationals arrested.
Upon investigation, the raiding team found out that the barges were given permits for dredging activities only.
This controversy is a taint to the city government. How can city officials allow this to happen? Are the permits issued only without verifying if the applicants are really doing what they applied for? Are city officials not doing inspection on all companies that applied for dredging permits?
The river is slowly being destroyed at the expense of Kagay-anons who are the ones who will surely suffer – or have suffered – from the ill effects of mining.
Law enforcement authorities are still doing further investigation but even with this, the city government has a lot of explaining to do.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on October 30, 2012.