Group slams reopening of mine sites closed by Lopez

Elizabeth Marcelo - The Philippine Star

MANILA, Philippines — Fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya) yesterday slammed Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu for allowing the reopening of mine sites ordered closed by the late secretary Gina Lopez.

“We are extremely mad with Environment Secretary Cimatu. He should be held responsible over massive destruction of the environment in the name of corporate interests and bureaucratic corruption,” Pamalakaya said.

Cimatu announced on Wednesday that some mining companies ordered closed or suspended by Lopez would be allowed to resume operations after applying corrective measures recommended by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

Lopez either closed or suspended the operations of 26 mining firms for alleged violation of environmental standards.

“Mr. Cimatu shows no ethos in environmental protection. He is a 180 degree turn of his predecessor Gina Lopez, who led a crackdown against illegal mines and other forms of environmental destruction in the country,” Pamalakaya national chairman Fernando Hicap said.

The group urged other environmental activists to denounce the DENR’s turnaround on its mandate.


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