THE Cebu Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office (Penro) urged village officials to serve as front-liners in terms of enforcing environmental laws governing small-scale mining and sand and gravel extraction.
In an orientation with village officials from various parts of the Province earlier today, August 1, 2018, Penro head Jayson Lozano said there is a need for villages to receive continuous education particularly in the implementation of environmental laws and ordinances.
Lozano said village officials have an important role in the implementation of Republic Act 7942, otherwise known as the Philippine Mining Act of 1995; and Provincial Board Ordinance 2008-10 which aims to empower villages to get revenue from small-scale mining and sand and gravel extraction.
He admitted that not all village officials are aware of the two laws and the need for them to directly enforce it.
Lozano admitted that some village officials even call upon Penro to stop illegal extractors when they can always implement themselves.
“Ila man unta nang tugkaran, sila unta ang muproteksyon ana (That is their territory, they should protect it),” Lozano said.
But through the two laws, the Penro chief said village officials can secure a balance in protecting their natural resources and earn local revenues.
He said, on their part, they help village officials by monitoring those who secured small-scale mining and sand and gravel extraction permits from them.
The PENRO also conduct suspension of permits if extractors are caught abusing the environment, he added. (JKV/SunStar Cebu)