By MARY LOU MARIGZA
The protest against SM is snowballing (in contrast to the earth balling proposal of the greedy “green” kuno giant). Ammoyo ball-balatongen da tayo, ball-bulilikong da ken ball-bolaen da tayo a simumulagat. What gets everyone’s goat is the hugas-kamay of the one who sits at City Hall – that is a private property, we cannot do anything. Ay, apo, no kastoy ti mapaspasamak iti lubong tayo, awan ton ti mabati a kaykayo para iti sumaruno a henerasyon. Kasla to la diay “immula” da idi a semento a pine tree dita met la a lugar.
Now the protest has gone to BOYCOTT SM. No kadatayo nga Ilokano a ket, gunggunam a gamrud, kuna tayo koma. Hurt them where it hurts, uray ta adu met ti paggatangan tayo ti masapul tayo, adu met ti mabalin a panganan dita Session Road ken adu latta ti ukay-ukay ditoy Baguio.
When we were in college, Pines Hotel on the hill was a green place. For the longest time, Luneta Hill provided fresh pine air for the people. When Pines Hotel burned down, that place served as a spirit questors place, pasyalan and short cut to SPED, UP, Government Center, Convention Center and even to John Hay. Even if it is private property, we were part of that place. In the social networking sites, the once young folks are remembering their boy/girlhood and what they did at Luneta Hill. It is so sad when corporate giants claim ownership of once public places and just do as they wish in the name of “progress”!
We are grateful that Baguio media people have joined the crusade to stop SM’s development kuno. We are thankful that students are joining the call to promote green spaces. We are thankful that the “noisy” few have turned to the “noisy” thousands. We like that the Church people are enjoining everyone to preserve and conserve the integrity of creation. This is one of the most attended protest and the crowd came with their own placards, own provisions and own volition.
I wonder how the management of SM reacted to the multitude who joined the march-rally and the now clamor to BOYCOTT SM.
Let us keep up the pressure and join the tree-huggers. Maybe we can have a photo-ops embracing the pines and alnus and all those numbers sentencing them to death (which reminds me of the numbers placed on the Jews before they were incinerated at Auswitch). Those white numbers look eerie, too.
MAGNETITE MINING IN GONZAGA. The other week we were in Sta Ana, Cagayan for the Ecumenical Conference on Mining sponsored by the Archdiocese of Tuguegarao and the Ecumenical Bishops Forum. Priests, nuns, pastors and lay people from Nueva Vizcaya, Isabela and Cagayan attended the two day reflection and sharing session. It was also my chance to renew acquaintances with the priests and pastors of Cagayan who I have worked with since the ’80s.
The first order of the day was to visit two magnetite mining sites of Gonzaga, Calayan and Batangan where Huaxia and Liangxing Corporations operate. The Chinese state firms have been operating since 2008 and people’s resistance had been strong against their continued operations. There are Cease and Desist Orders from DENR against these firms since last year but these are not being implemented.
Young Taiwanese engineers welcomed the company of Archbishop Sergio Utleg and Bishop Alex Wandag. They can hardly speak English and from what we gathered the Batangan site extracts 700 tons of black sand on a 24-hour work cycle. Imagine all that sand sent from Gonzaga to Port Irene to China for the iron needs of their cities. And that was only Gonzaga we saw. Lallo to Aparri is being mined for river sand. Aparri to Buguey to Gonzaga is being mined for coastal sand.
Dump trucks bring magnetite sand to Port Irene 24-hours every day. The people have told us that all local officials have bought dump trucks and are earning from hauling the black sand to the ships. Naglaka metten ti panangilako da iti ili da. Naglaka metten ti balor ti kabiagan, biag ken masakbayan dagiti umili kadagitoy a luglugar.
As I write this column, we got a text informing us that the people of Gonzaga have started barricading the sites to prevent the dump trucks from leaving the mining sites.
I have seen Sta Ana and its beautiful beaches. The beaches of Aparri, Buguey and Gonzaga are getting lost. Ayannan ton ti papanan da no malayus dan? Ayannan ton ti papanan da no kanen ti baybay dagiti balbalay ken talon da kas iti mapaspasamak iti Aringay, Bauang, La Union ken iti Santa, Ilocos Sur gapu iti panagminas ti tangingi? # nordis.net