By KIMBERLIE NGABIT-QUITASOL
BAGUIO CITY — The Cervantes-Ipateg, Salakniban (CIS) movement, a group of Cervantes folk working for the protection of the environment, expressed gratitude to the Ilocos Sur provincial board for passing a resolution supporting the town’s no to mining stance.
“We are grateful to the provincial board for passing a resolution supporting our position against mining, this move is a boost to us little people fighting against a large company,” Conrado B. Asejo, one of the volunteers of CIS movement said.
The Ilocos Sur provincial board passed a resolution authored by Boardmember Pablito Sanidad, Jr. supporting the no mining policy within Cervantes town during their session last April 17. It can be recalled that the Cervantes town council passed two resolutions, one in 2013 and another in 2016 reiterating their opposition to any mining activity in their municipality.
Asejo also commended Sanidad for sponsoring the resolution. “We commend politicians like Atty. Sanidad who listens and supports the will of his constituents,” he said.
But Asejo expressed disappointment over the continuing presence of the Cordillera Exploration Company Inc. (CEXCI) despite existing mining ban in the their town.
According to Asejo, the CEXCI continue to go around the nine barangays directly affected by their applications.
“The municipal ordinance banning mining was passed in September 2016 but we learned that last March 13, CEXCI accompanied by officials of the NCIP (National Commission on Indigenous People) conducted a meeting with barangay officials and suddenly the company is claiming that six of the nine barangays already accepted the project,” Asejo said.
“Why is the company continuing with their activities when there is an ordinance banning mining in our town?” Asejo asked.
Asejo encouraged his fellow CIS movement volunteers to take on the challenge and continue explaining the ill-effects of mining to the environment despite the obstacles thrown at them. # nordis.net