Bishop doubts sincerity of Zubiri’s ‘Ecowarrior’ campaignBy Tina G. Santos
Philippine Daily Inquirer
MANILA, Philippines—An official of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) on Wednesday slammed former Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri’s pro-environment campaign, saying it might just be a ploy to advance his chances at winning in the coming elections.
Fr. Edu Gariguez, CBCP-National Secretariat for Social Action executive secretary, said he highly doubts the sincerity of the so-called “Ecowarriors” campaign saying it might just be part of Zubiri’s preparation for the elections in May 2013.
In an article posted on the CBCP website, Gariguez said Zubiri had not performed enough when he was still a senator in terms of caring for the environment.
“Dapat kung talagang nagmamalasakit ka sa isyu na ito, noon pa man, sa dami ng mga problema na dumating, eh nasaan siya?” said Gariguez, Asian winner of this year’s Goldman Prize for environmental protection.
“Hindi maalis yung pagdududa na ito ay isang kasangkapan lang para sa pampulitikong layunin at hindi ganun katotoo,” he added. “Lalo’t higit malapit na ang eleksyon, marami na ang mga gimik diyan at ito ay maaaring isang bahagi ng gimik kasi hindi naman namin siya nakasama sa pagtindig sa isyu ng kalikasan.”
For the past several months, Zubiri has been coming out with TV commercials about his Pilipinas Ecowarriors, an organization promoting environmental protection.
During his stint as senator, Zubiri authored laws on environment, from renewable energy to wildlife protection, as well as led conservation efforts like the Deer Foundation and Katala Foundation in Palawan.
Gariguez, however, said the former legislator has many things to do on issues like mining and illegal logging.