Talisay’s environmental task force not deputized by DENR, says official-A A +A
Monday, January 7, 2013
TALISAY City’s local environmental enforcement task force is not deputized by the National Government, an official of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) 7 said.
In an interview yesterday, DENR 7 spokesperson Eddie Llamedo said Talisay City’s Vanguard, which enforces environmental laws in the city, isn’t deputized by their agency, as what Talisay City Mayor Socrates Fernandez said earlier.
Only members of the Philippine National Police (PNP), particularly personnel trained in environmental enforcement, are deputized by DENR Secretary Ramon Paje, Llamedo told Sun.Star Cebu yesterday.
The city’s Vanguard watches out for the illegal transportation of sand and gravel and forestry products. Fernandez’s controversial ward, Joavan, is one of the members of the Vanguards.
Joavan was recently involved in another controversy when he attempted to stop a dump truck carrying sand and gravel despite the driver bearing documents supporting the transport.
A sand and gravel businessman plans to file charges against Joavan today over the incident.
But Llamedo said that while DENR has not deputized the Vanguard, the Talisay City Council can deputize the group, as stated in an ordinance, provided it conducts its operations within the city’s territorial jurisdiction.
Llamedo said that Julius Abad, the sand and gravel businessman who was aggrieved by Joavan’s action, can question Joavan’s deputy status in court.
Fernandez earlier said the Vanguard was deputized by DENR.
“If it (Vanguard) wasn’t deputized, then why is DENR recognizes our apprehensions and files cases against those we caught?” Fernandez told Sun.Star Cebu yesterday.
Fernandez said that aside from the Vanguard, the Fishermen Sea Ecological Care (Fiseca), which serves as the city’s local Bantay Dagat, is also deputized by the DENR.
Fernandez defended his son, saying Abad’s documents were doubtful as they had no certification from DENR.
In a separate interview, Talisay City opposition Councilor Romeo Villarante urged Fernandez to remove his adopted son from the Vanguard and prevent him from being employed in other departments in the Talisay City government.
Villarante said Joavan continues to be a defect in Fernandez’s administration.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 07, 2013.