Mining directive: Palace urged to consider lives of indigenous peopleINQUIRER.net
MANILA, Philippines — House committee on natural cultural communities chairman Ifugao Representative Teddy Brawner Baguilat on Thursday urged President Benigno Aquino III to consider the lives of indigenous people as Malacañang finalizes its mining executive order.
Although he admitted that he was for the mining EO, Baguilat said that the government should always take into consideration how indigenous people view mining activities in the country as they were the ones primarily affected by such operations.
He urged the government to observe the activities of large mining companies, some of which may be masquerading as small-scale mining firms in order to lower their tax contributions.
Albay Governor Joey Salceda, along with several other governors, challenged to take the new mining policy to the Supreme Court, saying that it would work against countryside and local governments.
Aurora Representative Juan Edgardo Angara and Eastern Samar Representative Ben Evardone meanwhile urged the Malacañang to ensure that the new mining policy “harmonizes” national laws and local ordinances to ensure that there are no legal conflicts.
Malacañang has earlier stated that the mining EO sought to strike a balance among conflicting interests and has assured that mining operations will not be allowed in prime agricultural lands, and ecotourism and religious sites. Karen Boncocan, INQUIRER.net