MGB-7 lifts sus­pen­sion vs. quarry op­er­a­tions

Cebu Daily News - - NEWS - By Futch An­thony Inso COR­RE­SPON­DENT

Ex­cept for the op­er­a­tions of APO Land and Quarry Corp. (ALQC) in Naga City, Cebu which will re­main sus­pended, the Mines and Geo­sciences Bureau in Cen­tral Visayas (MGB-7) has lifted its sus­pen­sion or­der against eight large-scale min­ing and 15 in­dus­trial sand and gravel (ISAG) ac­tiv­i­ties in the re­gion af­ter the com­pa­nies were cleared to op­er­ate by the MGB cen­tral of­fice.

MGB-7 in­for­ma­tion of­fi­cer Mar­ian Codilla said that the sus­pen­sion of large-scale quarry op­er­a­tions was lifted last Fri­day, Oc­to­ber 5; while ISAG op­er­a­tions were al­lowed to re­sume a week later or yes­ter­day.

“(These com­pa­nies have ) have ei­ther com­plied or they are about to com­ply with the rec­om­men­da­tions stip­u­lated by the team be­cause they have dif­fer­ent sit­u­a­tions,” Codilla said.

Codilla, how­ever, warned the firms to com­ply with all the MGB rec­om­men­da­tions, es­pe­cially those con­cern­ing the com­mu­ni­ties sur­round­ing the area where they op­er­ate, even if their op­er­a­tions were found to be safe by the MGB com­pos­ite teams who con- ducted the re­view.

En­vi­ron­ment Sec­re­tary Roy Ci­matu had an­nounced the 15-day sus­pen­sion of all quarry op­er­a­tions in Re­gions I, III, IV-CALABARZON,V, VII, X, XI, and XIII, last Septem­ber 20, a day af­ter a mas­sive land­slide hit Naga City, Cebu.

In Cen­tral Visayas, a to­tal of 26 large-scale quarry and ISAG op­er­a­tions were sus­pended at that time.

Among the com­pa­nies now given the go-sig­nal to op­er­ate are: Solid Earth Devel­op­ment Corp. in San Fer­nando, Cebu; Dolomite Min­ing Corp. in Al­coy, Cebu; Bo­hol Lime­stone Corp. in Gar­cia-Her­nan­dez, Bo­hol; Lazi Bay Re­sources Devel­op­ment Inc. in Lazi, Siqui­jor; JLR Con­struc­tion and Ag­gre­gates, Inc. in Co­gon, City of Naga; Heirs of Ar­turo Zayco in Ayun­gon, Ne­gros Ori­en­tal; and Repub­lic Ce­ment and Build­ing Ma­te­ri­als, Inc. in Danao City, Cebu.

The op­er­a­tions of ALQC in Naga City re­mains sus­pended, pend­ing an on-go­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tion con­ducted by the MGB Cen­tral Of­fice.

Res­i­dents of Si­tio Ta­gay­tay and Sin­du­lan, Barangay Ti­naan had blamed ALQC for the mas­sive land­slide which re­sulted to the death of at least 78 in­di­vid­u­als while 5 are still miss­ing.

The land­slide also left close to 8,000 peo­ple home­less.

“From what we have known, their re­port (on the in­ves­ti­ga­tion) has now un­der­gone peer re­view. Since the re­port is tech­ni­cal, it has to pass all ex­perts re­view­ing it be­fore it will be re­leased to the LGU (lo­cal gov­ern­ment unit) and to the pub­lic,” said Codilla of the in­ves­ti­ga­tion in­volv­ing ALQC.

Codilla added that aside from MGB-7, other agen­cies were also in­ves­ti­gat­ing other as­pects of the Naga City land­slide. In­dus­trial Sand And Gravel (isag)

Those cleared for ISAG op­er­a­tions by MGB-7 are the fol­low­ing: WTG Con­struc­tion and Devel­op­ment Corp. of Willy T. Go in Com­bado, Balam­ban; Balam­ban Con­struc­tion and Marine Ser­vices Ltd. Co of Ceil­ito T. Bar­de­nas in Bi­a­song, Balam­ban; Stan­ley S. Chona in Liki and Cabag­dalan, Balam­ban; An­nette J. Navarro in Liki, Balam­ban; Gi­mar A. Be­sañes in Me­dia

Once Toledo City; Ma. Ce­leste L. Dolino in Dum­log, Toledo City; Ophe­lio L. Dolino in Cap­i­tan Clau­dio, Toledo City; Mer­riam Jane B. Du­madag in Cam­ban­gug, Toledo City, Ar­lene T. Borja in Biga, Toledo City; Mervin R. Teo in Lag­tang Gen­eral Cli­maco, Toledo City; Humprey R. Ben­itez in Gen­eral Cli­maco, Toledo City; Willy U. Te’s Jute Rocks, Inc. in New Bago, Ag­banga and Sta. Rita, As­turias; Ceil­ito T. Bar­de­nas in Sta. Rita, As­turias; Anna B. Suba in Ar­pili, Balam­ban; and Oliver Sobere Yu in Ayun­gon Ne­gros Ori­en­tal.

Codilla said that MGB-7 will con­tinue to reg­u­larly mon­i­tor and visit all quarry and min­ing op­er­a­tions in the re­gion.

"We will mon­i­tor ev­ery as­pect of their op­er­a­tions quar­terly es­pe­cially in their com­pli­ance on the safety and health pro­gram, so­cial devel­op­ment, en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­grams and projects ,” she said.

“We also con­duct meet­ings with the min­ing com­pa­nies, while the Mul­ti­par­tite Man­age­ment Team (MMT), a com­pos­ite team of an NGO (non-gov­ern­ment or­ga­ni­za­tion), LGUs, MGB, Depart­ment and En­vi­ron­ment and Nat­u­ral Re­sources (DENR) and En­vi­ron­men­tal Man­age­ment Bureau (EMB) is also mon­i­tor­ing their op­er­a­tions," Codilla added.

Mean­while, the sus­pen­sion of op­er­a­tions within the Min­eral Pro­duc­tion Shar­ing Agree­ment (MPSA) of Quarry Ven­tures Philip­pines Inc. was also lifted ex­cept for the op­er­a­tion in one par­cel of its per­mit area.

MPSA is one of the three modes of min­eral agree­ment be­tween the gov­ern­ment and a pri­vate in­di­vid­ual or com­pany for pur­poses of min­ing, as stip­u­lated in Sec­tion 26 of RA 7942 or the Min­ing Act of the Philip­pines.

CDN FILE PHOTO

This is an ae­rial snap­shot of the land­slide area in Si­tio Sin­du­lan, Barangay Ti­naan in Naga City. The photo was taken from an Air Force he­li­copter sur­vey­ing the land­slide area on Oct. 3, 2018.

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