Lawyers, students create anti-mining group-A A +A
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
A GROUP of lawyers, law students and other interested individuals formed a task force that will oppose mining activities in Cebu and the Visayas.
Lawyer Liza Osorio said Task Force Batok Mina (TFBM) will campaign against “irresponsible and destructive mining.”
“It is our duty to protect mother earth, safeguard our environment against irresponsible mining activities and ensure that mining operations in our country are in conformity with the laws of the land and the Constitution,” Osorio said.
She pointed out that every Filipino has the right to a “balanced and healthy” environment.
Lawyer Aaron Pedrosa of Sanlakas Cebu and Freedom from Debt Coalition (FDC) said there is “rampant” illegal mining starting in Talisay City until Argao, Cebu.
Pedrosa said coal mining permits have been granted to people or entities that do not have regard for the environment.
“The people must be educated and make a stand against destructive mining,” he said.
The anti-mining advocates cited the case of Agusan del Norte, where nickel mining operations polluted its seas in 2006.
Few anti-mining campaign efforts got international attention, like the one launched by Eufremia “Minnie” Solomon Crouse against mining operations in Siquijor.
Crouse produced a documentary titled, “The Case of Wilkie Duran Monte: Toxic Chemical Victim,” which bagged the 2002 Grand Jury Prize in Cinemanila and an award at the Brussels International Film Festival.
In his deathbed, Monte recalled his experiences as a miner in Siquijor. He got ill due to toxic chemicals at the mine.
The government eventually revoked the license of the mining company in Siquijor.
The TFBM is a movement initiated by law professors and law students of the University of Cebu, University of San Carlos and the University of San Jose-Recoletos, together with the Philippine Earth Justice Center Inc.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on October 09, 2013.