• Construction of first-class wharf in Bataan delayed

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    BAGAC, Bataan: The construction of a bigger and better wharf here for next year’s Asia Pacific Economic Conference (APEC) meeting may be delayed because of a simple misunderstanding.

    Mayor Ramil del Rosario on Monday said he stopped four days ago the extraction and hauling of boulders in Bagac, Bataan following reports of illegal quarrying.

    “Dahil sa kapirasong papel, mapipigilan ang pag-asenso ng bayan ng Bagac. Mabibinbin ang paggawa ng pier at baka hindi umabot sa 2015 kaya magkaroon sana ng konsiderasyon [Because of a small piece of paper, there will be no progress in Bagac. The construction of the pier will be delayed and might not be finished by 2015. They should consider this],” he said.

    The Mines and Geo-Sciences Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources claimed that the alleged quarrying of boulders in Sitio Ulingan in Barangay Banawang, Bagac has no permit.

    However, Del Rosario said the necessary documents were submitted by Las Casas Filipinas de Acuzar owned by businessman Jerry Acuzar and were approved by the Environment and Natural Resources Office (ENRO) in Bataan.

    Del Rosario said the Bataan ENRO issued the permit while he and Banawang Barangay Chairman Carlito Bautista gave their “No Objection” certification when they learned that the project would not harm the environment but would help the people in terms of big economic gains.

    Godofredo de Guzman of ENRO said there was no quarrying in the first place but land development.

    Del Rosario said he thought the ENRO permit was enough since the boulders were only being removed from a private property whose owners gladly consented.

    “Walang may-ari ng bukid na nagrereklamo dahil walang mapi–pinsala, inaalis lamang ang mga bato para matamnan ng maayos [No one is complaining because no damage will be done. The boulders were being removed so that plants could grow in the area],” del Rosario said.

    Like hitting two birds with one stone, del Rosario said this would make the land more productive, especially when the first-class wharf is completed.

    “Kung bundok ito hindi ako papayag. Walang magaganap na landslide o pagbaha dahil kapatagan ang kinukunan ng malalaking bato. At hindi magiging dahilan ito ng pagkatuyo ng ilog [If this were a mountain, I would not allow the project to push through. No landslide or flood will occur because the boulders are being removed from a plain. This won’t contribute to the drying of the river],” he said.

    Del Rosario asked his detractors to set aside politics and help him prepare for APEC where world leaders are expected to arrive.

    “Sa ano mang pag-asenso tulad sa Hong Kong, Subic Freeport at maging sa Limay [Bataan], may kaakibat na sakripisyo subalit dito sa Bagac walang collateral damage, walang masisira sa amin [Sacrifices have been made when we speak of developments in Hong Kong, Subic Freeport and in Limay, Bataan, but here in Bagac there is no collateral damage and nothing will be destroyed],” del Rosario said.

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    1 Comment

    1. This story is a great example of how sound principle and honest procedure gets lost in our politics today. While Del Rosario asks to set aside “politics” is he in fact asking for his detractors to set aside the processes we have established to ensure transparency in the actions of our leaders?
      It is one thing to blame unfinished paperwork for the delay in this project, but it is another to actually take responsibility and follow protocol in the first place to get the job done right the first time.
      The sheer fact that Del Rosario “thought” the permit provided the green light for extracting boulders from a private property shows poor planning from the leaders in Bagac.
      Furthermore, have these “owners” actually given a written consent and are their being remunerated for the extraction of boulders from their private property? Was there sound evidence that no damage would be done? Surely running large machinery up and down the length of the property, and hauling large boulders from it would cause significant damage to its ground/structural integrity. Did the mayor consider that?
      Do you honestly think this is good enough? Cutting corners and jumping through loopholes in the system isn’t the greatest example of sound leadership. Del Rosario should follow the necessary processes in order to see this project completion. Stop blaming unfinished paperwork! Because the papers won’t do themselves!