Trillanes to Boracay residents: Seek TRO at SC vs island closure
Aside from seeking a Senate probe, Senator Antonio Trillanes IV also urged Boracay residents to seek a temporary restraining order (TRO) from the Supreme Court to stop the six-month closure of the island starting April 26.
Trillanes said he would also be filing a resolution on Wednesday to ask the Senate committee on tourism headed by Senator Nancy Binay to conduct the probe on the island’s closure.
Trillanes also said that Boracay would be shut down for six months to allow and fast-track the construction of a casino on the island, contrary to President Rodrigo Duterte’s earlier remark that he was against it.
“Far from it actually. I never said building anything or even a nipa hut there,” President Duterte said in a press conference in Davao City before flying to China on Monday.
“Walang plano diyang casino-casino. Tama na iyan kasi sobra na. May casino dito, casino doon,” he added.
But Trillanes, in a press briefing at his office in the Senate, belied the President’s claim as he showed a photo of the President shaking hands with the owner of casino. The photo, he said, was taken last December.
“So maliwanag na nagsisinungaling si Mr. Duterte,” he said.
“Sinabi din nya noong February na meron syang moratorium sa pagawa ng casino..Inulit din nya yan kahapon pero noong March 21, nag grant ng license itong Pagcor (Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corp). So dito nyo makikita kung gano kasinugaling si Duterte,” the senator added.
Trillanes insists that with Boracay’s shutdown, the island’s port and road network would be used exclusively to bring in construction materials and heavy equipment to build a casino.
In the Senate probe, Trillanes said he would ask concerned agencies to submit a master development plan of Boracay rehabilitation, relocation and livelihood plans for affected residents of the island.
“At doon naman sa mga residente ng Boracay, ako, I encourage them to file a petition for TRO (temporary restraining order) sa SC nang mahinto itong kabalbalan na ito ni Duterte,” said the senator.
He pointed out that under the law, the residents should be provided with a “suitable” relocation first before asking them to move out of the island.
Trillanes also dismissed the statement of the President that he would make Boracay a land reform area.
“Di uubra yang land reform na yan,” he said. “Talagang nagpapakita dito na hindi lang sya padalos-dalos kundi incompetent pa dahil yung nakapunta ng Boracay, wala namang farm lots doon at yung mga magsasaka e wala naman doon.” he added. /muf
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