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Neglecting nature’s warning in Naga

By: Atty. Ruphil Bañoc September 27,2018 - 08:40 PM

BAÑOC

If MGB inspected only Sitio Tagaytay, why did its letter say that the cracks in the quarry site are not considered critical and do not pose imminent danger to the neighboring
communities?

Barangay Tinaan, Naga City is susceptible to landslide as reflected in the geohazard map provided by the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB-7).

As early as 2008 geologist Abraham Lucero Jr. already identified in his field report that said area is hazardous.

He requested that families in Sitio Sindulan of the said barangay be relocated.

How come that the following year, or in 2009, the Apo Land and Quarry Corp. (ALQC) quarry tenement was approved by the same government agency? What big miracle did Apo do to get the LGU’s nod?

With regard to the local officials of the town, what made them approve the permit at the LGU level?

What convinced them to endorse the said quarry operation?

People in Sitios Tagaytay and Sindulan of Barangay Tinaan had been complaining of the quarry activities in said place as they detected big cracks on the soil.

This was on top of the disturbance caused by the heavy equipment of Apo that operated from 8 a.m. until 11 p.m.

On August 28, 2018, they again asked the help of their mayor about their worries as they observed something unusual in the site where the quarry operation was conducted.

Based on the documents I gathered, on August 29, 2018, Mayor Kristine Chiong issued a Cease and Desist Order (CDO) addressed to ALQC to stop their activities in Sitio Tagaytay.

Part of Chiong’s letter to ALQC states, “This CDO shall take effect immediately and shall be lifted as soon as the MGB issues the necessary clearance that ALQC may proceed with its quarry activities in Sitio Tagaytay, Barangay Tinaan, safely.”

Chiong’s letter was received by MGB on August 31, 2018.

But hold your breath: On August 29, the same day that Mayor’s CDO came out, the MGB issued clearance that the cracks in the site is a natural phenomenon and not related to the mining operation.

Therefore, what time of August 29 was the CDO implemented, if there was any?

And what time of the same day that it was lifted?

Note that the mayor’s CDO and MGB’s clearance are both dated August 29.

If MGB inspected only Sitio Tagaytay, why did its letter say that the cracks in the quarry site are not considered critical and do not pose imminent danger to the neighboring communities?

Is Sitio Sindulan, located at the foot of the mountain of Tagaytay, not a neighboring community?

The letter of MGB signed by Atty. Gerardo Mahusay generated negative comments from the people.

He said he was just the signatory of the cover letter, the attached substance were the reports of geologists Denis Aleta and Rodrigo Gerale.

They were the ones who attested that the place is clear from danger.

It is interesting to know whether their findings run counter to that of geologist Lucero’s finding in 2008.

The incident last September 20, 2018 that claimed 64 lives, 18 injured and many missing is very tragic.

It appears that nature struck back.

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