Ombudsman warns LGUs of charges vs violation of solid waste management laws
Miriam Garcia Desacada (The Freeman) - April 26, 2016 - 10:00am

TACLOBAN CITY, Philippines — More than 300 local government units nationwide have not complied yet with the law on ecological solid waste management, since this was enacted in 2000, according to Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon Gerard Mosquera.

The Ombudsman official, who was in this city for a public forum on assessment of compliance of LGUs, said 14 provinces, including a town in Northern Samar and two others in Leyte have been ordered by the anti-graft body to submit an explanation on their failure to comply with the law.

Close to 30 investigators from the Environmental Ombudsman team have been deployed to serve the orders on the mayors, vice mayors and councilors named in the complaint, said Mosquera.

“They were given ample time (since 2000) to comply with the law, but until now, they committed gross neglect of duty and grave misconduct, for their failure,” he said.

Republic Act 9003, on solid waste management, mandates that “no open dump sites shall be established and operated (by an LGU), nor any practice or disposal of solid waste by any, using open dumps, … and that every LGU shall convert its open dumps to controlled dumps.”

Mosquera told the local media that the Ombudsman is determined to file charges against LGU officials who have failed to comply with the law, and so far had already acted on the 50 complaints filed by the National Solid Waste Management Commission against the erring LGU officials.

“We are here to warn them that the Ombudman is serious to run after local officials who continue violating the law. It’s now time for them to comply because the law has been there for more than 10 years,” he said. — (FREEMAN)

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