Priest asks Cebu archbishop to help save trees

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Thursday, August 28, 2014


RUNNING priest Fr. Robert Reyes has asked Cebu Archbishop Jose Palma to help his campaign to protect trees in Cebu.

Reyes led a run from Cebu Capitol to the Archbishop’s Palace on D. Jakosalem St. to see Palma. But when Reyes and some Cebu mountaineers arrived there, the prelate was not around.

Palma’s secretary, Fr. Mhar Balili, received Reyes’s group and told them the archbishop was in Catanduanes.

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Even though Palma was not around, Reyes made an appeal through Balili and the media covering the event.

“I came back to Cebu to reach out to you and beg that you stand by the trees whether young or old, healthy or sick,” Reyes said. He also wrote a letter to Palma.

Reyes said Palma may have been “misquoted” by media, which reported that the archbishop supported the cutting of diseased trees along the national highway from the city of Naga to Carcar.

The priest also reacted to reports that several trees would be cut to implement the Bus Rapid Transit project in Cebu City.

“Why are we allowing trees to be cut in the name of progress? I am not against progress but we can always implement projects without compromising the environment,” he said.

He urged the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to stop the cutting of trees to pave the way for infrastructure projects.

From Cebu, Reyes and his group went to the City of Naga to plant narra tree saplings to replace the three century-old acacia trees that were cut earlier by the Department of Public Works and Highways 7.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on August 28, 2014.

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