New Cebu City public cemetery

Cimatu wants fruit trees in Sapangdaku to be transferred, not cut

By: Delta Dyrecka Letigio July 21,2020 - 06:01 PM

The lot in Barangay Sapangdaku where the new Cebu City public cemetery is expected to rise. | Photo Courtesy of Cebu City PIO

CEBU CITY, Philippines — Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu, the overseer of the Interagency Task Force (IATF) in Cebu, said that the fruit trees that may be affected in the building of a new public cemetery in Barangay Sapangdaku shouldn’t be cut down and instead should be transferred.

Cimatu said on Tuesday, July 21, 2020, that the trees should be earth-balled and transferred to a better place because the fruit-bearing trees such as mango trees are healthy and can grow in some other areas.

“I support the plan (for a cemetery) in the site. However, there are several fruit trees there. I gave instructions that if there are still fruit trees standing, they should be transferred,” said Cimatu.

The secretary inspected the area planned for a cemetery dedicated Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) victims in Sitios Patayng Yuta and Baksan in Barangay Sapangdaku on Monday, July 20, 2020.

He already gave his verbal go-signal on the project and the Cebu City Government is now left to fulfill all documentary requirements so they can finally start with the project.

Cimatu specifically instructed that the healthy trees should not be cut down, and only the trees which have fallen over time may be cut down for the development of the cemetery.

The Environment Secretary said the lot in Sapangdaku is the most viable place for the cemetery because it is outside a protected zone.

The cemetery was supposed to be built in a lot in Barangay Guba, but the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) ordered to halt the project after 389 trees were cut illegally.

Read: Cebu City’s new public cemetery to be transferred in Sapangdaku

The area was also within a protected landscape, prompting the Environment Secretary to order the city government to look for another space. /bmjo

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