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Freeman Region

Guv backs mayor's fight vs. DENR

- Danny B. Dangcalan -

BACOLOD CITY, Philippines  — Governor Alfredo Marañon Jr. said he is supporting Murcia Mayor Andrew Montelibano in his fight against the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) for alleged inaction on illegal logging activities in that town.

"I will give him all the support that he needs. We have been spending for our reforestation projects. We plant (trees) and (then) they (the DENR) would only allow the cutting of those trees?" Marañon said.

In a press conference Wednesday, Montelibano alleged there has been connivance between the DENR (officers) and illegal loggers after a truckload of logs was impounded in the town last July. He said he was dismayed at the inaction of the DENR officers on the suspected illegal loggers who were arrested.

He said that for almost four months now, the DENR has not yet acted on the case he filed against Zaldy Alib, 50, of Brgy. Canlandog, Murcia, who owns the logs when the truck driver Nilo Giquin and other persons were caught in the act of loading 6,263 board feet of mahogany logs into the truck at Purok 1 Brgy. Minoyan at about 7:30 p.m. on July 21.

Montelibano said he and Murcia Police officers, led by Sr. Insp. Edencio Gregorio, actually caught the suspects allegedly in the act of loading the mahogany logs. The trucks were impounded for violation of permits and for plying out of route, while the logs were impounded for permits violation, he said.

The other truck loaded with charcoal was released after proper documents were presented by Alib, said the mayor.

Last month, Provincial Legal Officer Jose Ma. Valencia, also the governor's chief of staff, also raised complaints against the DENR for releasing the logs seized by the members of the Task Force Ilahas in Don Salvador Benedicto.

He criticized the DENR for alleged practice of issuing late clearances on several apprehensions made by TFI related to illegal logging activities in the province.

DENR officials however have yet to issue their side on the issue. (FREEMAN)

BRGY

DENR

DEPARTMENT OF ENVIRONMENT AND NATURAL RESOURCES

DON SALVADOR BENEDICTO

EDENCIO GREGORIO

GOVERNOR ALFREDO MARA

MONTELIBANO

MURCIA MAYOR ANDREW MONTELIBANO

MURCIA POLICE

NILO GIQUIN

PROVINCIAL LEGAL OFFICER JOSE MA

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