Chinese invasion in Opol town-A A +A
By Dr. Bob Ocio
Isyo ug Servicio
Sunday, September 8, 2013
WE ARE chilled or angered by the Chinese bullying and invasion in the South China Sea, but almost failed to notice and get angry at their invasion right here in the city and Misamis Oriental with a trail of yet another Sendong type of destruction, robbing us of our gold without agreement of any sharing scheme and contribution to the government whatsoever. Yet, the MGB and the DENR are playing dumb and deaf.
We have dismantled but not yet, the mining operations in the Cagayan de Oro side of the Iponan River but the Chinese are shifting to the other side, Opol, threatening 70,000 lives along the Iponan river in Cagayan de oro and the municipality of Opol.
Yet, the MGB, DENR continue to object to the Bangon Kagay-an petition for a Temporary Environmental Protection Order (TEPO) at the Court of Appeals. These people in the government particularly Secretary Paje and MGB Director Rex Monsanto are playing deaf and dumb and probably making a mockery of the existing Memorandum of Agreement with SULOG-One Sendong is Enough as a flimsy cover. But we will not relent an inch because this is our country. We ought to defend it the way our past heroes did.
So, here we go again! Will you allow this disaster to happen again in Cagayan de Oro? The exploration equals the open pit mining that can accommodate six San Agustin cathedrals inside its hole. Please look at one of the photos used at the cover story of Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro today. It shows the open pit mining in barangay Tumpagon in Cagayan de Oro. And so, Bangon Kagay-an, asked.
Black Stone Mineral Resources Corporation (BMRC) represented by a certain Marilou Cheng of Binondo, Manila is setting up mining equipment for a Joint Mining Exploration in Nangcaon, Opol, Misamis Oriental reportedly without the necessary Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) from the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB), approval and consultation with the local government and specific duty and authority of the DENR and the local government thereof in violation of Section 2 of Executive Order No. 79 by President Aquino and Section 7, Article X of the Philippine Constitution.
“Further, no financial sharing agreements were met with the local government unit on the proceeds of the mining operations in accordance with national laws.” This scheme has made the Chinese and their conduits in the government rich, and the Filipinos poor and victims of would be environmental disasters.
A letter signed by Philippine Development Mining Corporation, president lawyer Lito Mondragon of the (BSMRI) addressed to Mayor Maximo Seno merely informed him of the nature of the joint venture of his company with Blackstone without producing any of the requirements provided for by law.
We are thankful to the Opol local government led by Mayor Seno for instructing BSMRI to put on hold its planned operations until properly convinced of its legality and viability. Unfortunately, reports from Barangay Nangcaon has reached us that the back hoes are already present.
This is Bangon Kagay-an’s official position through its chair Nixon Baban. “Section 2 of Executive Order No. 79 states, ‘full enforcement of Environmental Standards in Mining.’ The Government in general, and the Department of Environmental and Natural Resources (DENR) in particular, in coordination with concerned LGUs, shall ensure that environmental standards in mining, as prescribed by the various mining and environmental laws, rules, and regulations, shall be fully and strictly enforced, and appropriate sanctions meted out against violators thereof."
Therefore, BSMRI cannot just proceed without the go signal and coordination of the LGU on matters provided in the aforementioned law.
Section 7, Article X of the Philippine Constitution provides that local government units (LGUs) are entitled to an equitable share in the proceeds of the utilization and development of the national wealth within their jurisdiction, and the Local Government Code of 1991 provides that LGUs have the duty and authority to protect and co-manage the environment and enhance the right of the people to a balanced ecology.
Let us support SULOG and all other organizations that share the same cause to rally behind OPOL Municipality and ensure that the people will not be fooled or exploited, and the integrity of its surrounding environment protected and preserved.
The last time MGB said it was just exploratory see what happened, view the following link: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SH0i2OtIarg
Can they be trusted? It is ironic, our enemy is our government.
Published in the Sun.Star Cagayan de Oro newspaper on September 08, 2013.