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Village council takes back small-scale mines support

/ 09:10 PM November 11, 2011

ILOILO CITY—A village council in Libertad, Antique, has withdrawn its support for mining operations in the community amid opposition from residents.

In a resolution passed during a special session on Oct. 26, the San Roque barangay council recalled its Sept. 16 resolution that endorsed the small-scale mining operations of Passi City Mayor Jesry Palmares, Jinky Palmares and Teodoro Loriega, all officers and incorporators of the Archlegan Mines Corp. (AMC). The firm has a pending application for an exploration permit for more than 1,000 hectares in the villages of San Roque and Pajo in Libertad town and Luhod-Bayang, Duyong, Tingib and Mag-aba in Pandan town.

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In its two-page resolution, the San Roque barangay council said it was withdrawing its support for the mining operations due to opposition to the operations from their village and neighboring communities.

“There is outcry among our constituents and from residents of neighboring villages,” the resolution said.

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The council earlier endorsed the project, saying mining would bring livelihood to residents and revenue to the village.

Various groups have been opposing mining in Libertad and the neighboring town of Pandan because the proposed mining areas, they said, are near or within a protected area.

Leo Van Juan, MGB regional director, said the mining areas of AMC and the individual applicants were outside the protected area.

Jesry Palmares, AMC president, said his firm has secured permits and environmental compliance certificates (ECCs) from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR).

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