Mining firm sues Sibuyan, Romblon barangay leaders, environmentalists
MANILA, Philippines — The Altai Philippines Mining Company (APMC) has launched a legal battle against the environmentalists and local officials who stand in the way of their operations in Sibuyan Island, Romblon, according to Alyansa Tigil Muna (ATM) reports on Monday.
Based on the complaint affidavit dated Feb. 4, shared by ATM, APMC has filed for “Damages and Injunction with Prayer for Temporary Restraining Order and Writ for Preliminary Injunction” against two barangay officials and several members of local environmental groups before the Regional Trial Court Branch 106 of Cajidiocan, Sibuyan Island, Romblon.
The hearing for the temporary restraining order is scheduled on Feb. 8, 8:30 a.m., while the hearing for Preliminary Injunction is set on Feb. 9, 8:30 a.m.
“We denounce in the strongest possible terms the legal harassment that has been put forward by Altai against local environmental leaders, including ATM leaders Elizabeth Ibanez and Rodne Galicha et. al.,” ATM said in a social media post.
Tension gripped Sibuyan Island recently after residents protested and tried to stop the operations of the mining fiorm.
The residents also alleged that APMC operated on the island illegally.
The mining company on Saturday, however, claimed that it secured all the necessary permits to operate in the area.
However, the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) has already ordered the APMC to suspend operations after it allegedly failed to show an Environmental Compliance Certificate and was also caught cutting trees without a permit.
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