ILOILO

Guimaras guv to power barge operator: Take responsibility

THE Provincial Government of Guimaras urged AC Energy Corporation to take full responsibility for the oil spill that has affected several villages in the province.

AC Energy Corporation operates the Power Barge 102 that was damaged by an explosion last July 3, 2020, spilling an estimated 251,000 liters of bunker fuel that has reached the coastal barangays of Guimaras.

Governor Samuel Gumarin said there should be no amount of bunker fuel that will remain in the shorelines of Guimaras.

He said Ayala Corporation has the responsibility to clean up the hazardous waste.

"Klaruhon ko lang, wala sang bunker fuel nga mabilin sa Guimaras. Dapat paguwaon na siya kun diin man na dal-on sang Ayala," Gumarin said.

Data from the Provincial Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office (PDRRMO) show that the oil spill has affected 23 barangays of the island province as of July 6, 2020.

Seventeen of the affected barangays are from the town of Buenavista. These include the villages of Montpiller, Rizal, Sto. Rosario, Magsaysay, Zaldivar, Sawang, Taminla, Dagsaan, Tacay, Getulio, San Miguel, Navalas, Bacjao, Tanag, Umilig, Avila and East Valencia.

Meanwhile, Barangays Morobuan, Hoskyn, Rizal, Balcon Melliza, Balcon Maravilla, and Espinosa in the Municipality of Jordan are also reeling on the effect of the oil spill.

Gumarin underscored that lessons from the previous oil spills that hit the island should be reason for Guimarasnons to be vigilant.

He said time is of the essence and stakeholders should act promptly to mitigate the impact of the disaster.

"Dapat man nila maintyindihan nga may mga responsibilidad sila. May mga economic laws. Hopefully, experience will teach us to be more vigilant and dasig na reaction naton parte diri," he added.

Engr. Edwin Gallego assured that AC Energy Corporation will own up to its liabilities.

Gallego said the company will hire community workers needed for the clean-up operation.

It will also provide the needed protective equipment for those involved in the clean-up operation, he added.

Gallego said the Ayala Corporation will also handle the collection and transport of the hazardous waste. (PR)


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