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More on Black Sand Mining

kwadernongtagaulat
April 21, 2009

SAND MINING

The industry of mining the sand along the shores of Buguey, Cagayan is alive and healthy. Consequently, however, an environmental problem is feared to emerge. The main reason for mining the sand is to get magnetites, a mineral used in the manufacture of steel products. The trouble is, magnetites are what help keep shorelines intact. According to the Philippine Mining Act, mining activities 500 meters from the ocean is prohibited. This makes sand mining in Buguey against the law. It is said that the sand mined from Buguey is brought outside of the Philippines to a company in Korea. Despite it being against the law, the Governor himself permitted the mining operations. How is the problem dealt with if at all?

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MINAHAN SA TABING-DAGAT

Masigla ang industriya ng pagmimina ng buhangin sa tabing-dagat ng Buguey, Cagayan. Ngunit ang buhay na buhay na industriyang ito, nagdudulot naman ng unti-unting kamatayan sa kalikasan. Ang pangunahing pakay kasi sa kinukuhang buhangin ay ang magnetites, isang mineral na ginagamit sa paggawa ng mga produktong bakal. Ang problema, magnetites ang nagpapanatiling solido sa baybaying dagat dahilan para hindi ito tuluyang gumuho. Ayon sa Philippine Mining Act, ipinagbabawal ang pagmimina hanggang 500 metro mula sa dagat. Kaya ang pagmimina ng buhangin sa Buguey ay labag sa batas. Sinasabing inilalabas ng Pilipinas ang nakukuhang buhangin sa Buguey at dinadala sa isang kumpanya sa Korea. Sa kabila ng pagiging labag nito sa batas, mismong Gobernador ang nagpahintulot sa operasyon ng naturang pagmimina. Paano inaaksyunan ang problema kung may ginagawa man tungkol dito?

For All Political Aspirants – Please Take Note!

Words of wisdom for those who wish to lead;

Tandaan ang mga salita ni Abraham Lincoln: “The ultimate measure of success is not what you have become, or who you have become, but what others have become because of you.”

In other words, we should always be ready to share, not only the profit that we generate, but also our thoughts and our ideas, to lift someone else, to serve others.

Maganda ang sinabi ni Pareng Kahlil Gibran tungkol dito: “You give but little when you give of your material possessions. It is when you give of yourself that you truly give.”

GIVE NOT TAKE!!!

More Activities on Black Sand Mining

South Koreans illegally mining beaches
By Neal Cruz
Philippine Daily Inquirer
First Posted 23:27:00
05/31/2009

You have already heard what the South Koreans have done in our country, in particular at the Subic Bay Free Trade Zone and on Volcano Island in Taal, Batangas. They built a high-rise residential condominium in the middle of a forest and tried to raze a mini-forest along the pier area to build a hotel-casino in Subic. They succeeded in the forest but were blocked in the second by a Filipino architect trying to save our environment. In Taal, they almost succeeded in putting up a hot springs spa at the foot of Taal volcano itself, with the approval of the mayor but without an Environment Compliance Certificate (ECC) from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). They had almost finished construction when the people woke up to what they were doing and protested. So the national government stepped in and construction was stopped.

Now listen to what the South Koreans are doing in the northernmost tip of Cagayan, home province of Senate President Juan Ponce Enrile. Six coastal municipalities of Cagayan have miles and miles of beaches that attract tourists. Foreign and domestic tourists like the beaches because of their color. No, they are not white like that of Boracay but the opposite color: black. Although the sands are not white, they are more valuable than the snow-white sands of Boracay. It is because the black sand is 70 percent composed of magnetite, a mineral used in the smelting of iron ore into steel. It is what the South Koreans are lusting after, the newly industrialized country being hungry for steel. They have been digging up the beaches and shipping away the black sand. They have already made a wasteland of the beaches of five municipalities. Without a beachfront to hold back the sea, salt water has invaded the farms and made them unproductive. They have started mining the beach of a sixth municipality, Buguey, at Barangay Minanga Este, but the mayor, Ignacio M. Taruc, and the municipal council stopped them. Koreans and their agents made many visits to Mayor Taruc to ask for a mining permit but the latter refused. The municipal government vigorously opposed any form of mining on its beaches as it would mar its pristine beauty and pose a danger to its farmlands. The council passed a resolution “vehemently objecting to the mining of black sand and other minerals along the coastal areas of Buguey as we believe that this is destructive not only to the environment but also poses a danger to the safety and security of the people and the loss of their livelihood due to the entry of seawater into their farms.” Apparently, the governor, Alvaro T. Antonio, was not able to resist the “persuasive powers” of the Koreans In spite of the opposition of the people of Buguey, he issued a permit to mine its beaches of black sand, but it was in the name of a political ally, one Renato Alariao, a former member of the municipal council, although it was being used by the Korean company, Jisan Mining Corp.

Mayor Taruc wrote to the governor objecting to the mining operation as it would openly violate the Mining Law as well as the Provincial Environment Code which prohibits “the gathering, extraction, and/or removal of beach resources, pebbles, sand and gravel and boulders for whatever purpose.” Governor Antonio did not reply even as Mayor Taruc refused to issue a mayor’s permit. Instead, the governor directed the mining operation to proceed with the assistance of armed men. Taruc brought the case to Environment Secretary Lito Atienza who, on recommendation of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau which found the operation illegal, issued a cease-and-desist order on April 22, 2009. The order stopped further degradation of the environment but not before the beach and protective bunkers were ruined. The people of Buguey formed human barricades to prevent the shipping away of thousands of bags of black sand but the governor allegedly sent 100 policemen from different municipalities to act as guards of the miners.

The governor also resurrected an old invalid administrative case filed by the mayor’s political opponent against Taruc and immediately suspended him from office for 60 days last March 4. When the 60-day suspension expired last May 4, the provincial council rushed its decision on the case, convicted Mayor Taruc of simple misconduct but imposed the maximum six-month suspension. Worse, the suspension was immediately carried out despite Taruc’s timely motion for reconsideration. More than 100 policemen from the different towns were sent by the governor to the Buguey town hall, surrounded it and ejected Mayor Taruc despite his and his supporters’ protestations that the council decision was not yet final and executory. Electric power and water supply of the town hall were cut off. Taruc’s opponent, Vice Mayor Licerio Antiporda III, assumed the mayorship, but town hall employees still went to Mayor Taruc’s home were he held office. The suspension order of Taruc is on appeal and a complaint for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act has been filed against Governor Antonio with the Office of the Ombudsman, praying that the governor be preventively suspended. Apart from the charges filed against Governor Antonio and the dummies of the Korean mining company, shouldn’t charges of illegal mining be filed against the Koreans and their accomplices? Shouldn’t the Department of Interior and Local Government step in to prevent abuses by the provincial government? And shouldn’t the Department of Foreign Affairs summon the Korean ambassador and denounce the abuses of Korean business firms in the country?

A Korean Point of View about the Philippines

MY SHORT ESSAY ABOUT THE PHILIPPINES
by Jaeyoun Kim

Filipinos always complain about the corruption in the Philippines. Do you really think the corruption is the problem of the Philippines? I do not think so. I strongly believe that the problem is the lack of love for the Philippines .

Let me first talk about my country, Korea. It might help you understand my point. After the Korean War, South Korea was one of the poorest countries in the world. Koreans had to start from scratch because entire country was destroyed after the Korean War, and we had no natural resources.

Koreans used to talk about the Philippines, for Filipinos were very rich in Asia. We envy Filipinos. Koreans really wanted to be well off like Filipinos. Many Koreans died of famine. My father & brother also died because of famine. Korean government was very corrupt and is still very corrupt beyond your imagination, but Korea was able to develop dramatically because Koreans really did their best for the common good with their heart burning with patriotism.

Koreans did not work just for themselves but also for their neighborhood and country. Education inspired young men with the spirit of patriotism. 40 years ago, President Park took over the government to reform Korea. He tried to borrow money from other countries, but it was not possible to get a loan and attract a foreign investment because the economic situation of South Korea was so bad. Korea had only three factories. So, President Park sent many mine workers and nurses to Germany so that they could send money to Korea to build a factory. They had to go through horrible experience..

In 1964, President Park visited Germany to borrow money. Hundreds of Korean in Germany came to the airport to welcome him and cried there as they saw the President Park. They asked to him, “President, when can we be well off?” That was the only question everyone asked to him. President Park cried with them and promised them that Korea would be well off if everyone works hard for Korea , and the President of Germany got the strong impression on them and lent money to Korea. So, President Park was able to build many factories in Korea. He always asked Koreans to love their country from their heart.

Many Korean scientists and engineers in the USA came back to Korea to help developing country because they wanted their country to be well off. Though they received very small salary, they did their best for Korea. They always hoped that their children would live in well off country.

My parents always brought me to the places where poor and physically handicapped people live….. They wanted me to understand their life and help them. I also worked for Catholic Church when I was in the army. The only thing I learned from Catholic Church was that we have to love our neighborhood. And, I have loved my neighborhood. Have you cried for the Philippines ? I have cried for my country several times. I also cried for the Philippines because of so many poor people. I have been to the New Bilibid prison. What made me sad in the prison were the prisoners who do not have any love for their country. They go to mass and work for Church. They pray everyday.

However, they do not love the Philippines. I talked to two prisoners at the maximum-security compound, and both of them said that they would leave the Philippines right after they are released from the prison. They said that they would start a new life in other countries and never come back to the Philippines .

Many Koreans have a great love for Korea so that we were able to share our wealth with our neighborhood…. The owners of factory and company were distributed their profit to their employees fairly so that employees could buy what they needed and saved money for the
future and their children.

When I was in Korea, I had a very strong faith and wanted to be a priest. However, when I came to the Philippines, I completely lost my faith. I was very confused when I saw many unbelievable situations in the Philippines. Street kids always make me sad, and I see them everyday. The Philippines is the only Catholic country in Asia, but there are too many poor people here. People go to church every Sunday to pray, but nothing has been changed.

My parents came to the Philippines last week and saw this situation. They told me that Korea was much poorer than the present Philippines when they were young.. They are so sorry that there are so many beggars and street kids.. When we went to Pagsanjan, I forced my parents to take a boat because it would fun.. However, they were not happy after taking a boat. They said that they would not take the boat again because they were sympathized the boatmen, for the boatmen were very poor and had a small frame. Most of people just took a boat and enjoyed it. But, my parents did not enjoy it because of love for them.

My mother who has been working for Catholic Church since I was very young told me that if we just go to mass without changing ourselves, we are not Catholic indeed. Faith should come with action. She added that I have to love Filipinos and do good things for them because all of us are same and have received a great love from God. I want Filipinos to love their neighborhood and country as much as they love God so that the Philippines will be well off. I am sure that love is the keyword, which Filipinos should remember. We cannot change the sinful structure at once. It should start from person. Love must start in everybody, in a small scale and have to grow. A lot of things happen if we open up to love. Let’s put away our prejudices and look at our worries with our new eyes. I discover that every person is worthy to be loved. Trust in love, because it makes changes possible. Love changes you and me. It changes people, contexts and relationships. It changes the world. Please love your neighborhood and country.

Jesus Christ said that whatever we do to others we do to Him. In the Philippines, there is God for people who are abused and abandoned. There is God who is crying for love. If you have a child, teach them how to love the Philippines. Teach them why they have to love their
neighborhood and country. You already know that God also will be very happy if you love others.

That’s all I really want to ask you Filipinos.

Please pass it to all Filipinos you know. Thanks a lot.

An Appeal for Help – Clifford A. Paragua

PLEASE HELP ME.
By now you are probably aware that I (together with four other colleagues in TESDA) have a pending case at the Office of the President. I have filed my Motion for Reconsideration (two motions) since early last year but until now, the case has not progressed at all to any resolution, satisfactory or otherwise.
The case pertains to the printing of a book. As then members of the TESDA Bids and Awards Committee, we were pronounced GUILTY of GRAVE MISCONDUCT and meted the penalty of DISMISSAL from the service, forfeiture of eligibility, retirement benefits, leave credits and disqualification from re-employment in government service. The decision was issued by the Office of the President and signed by Executive Secretary Ermita.
Many have speculated that the members of the BAC (five of us) were simply cowed to follow the “dictates” of higher authority in terms of the selection of the winning bidder. Such speculation is made possibly for two reasons: 1) this is what “usually” happens in many agencies of government, and 2) this tends to support the view that since the head of the agency (Director General Syjuco) has been acquitted of the same charges by no less than the Office of the President through Executive Secretary Ermita, then the members of the BAC (who are assumed to have merely followed orders) should also be acquitted.
The speculation that the members of the BAC were simply cowed to follow “dictates” of higher authority is FARTHEST FROM THE TRUTH. While this may “usually” happen in other government agencies, this DID NOT HAPPEN in our case. The view that the members of the BAC should also be acquitted because the head of the agency has been acquitted of the same charges IS DEFINITELY TENABLE, BUT NOT BECAUSE WE SIMPLY FOLLOWED ORDERS, BUT ESSENTIALLY BECAUSE THE REASONS CITED IN THE DECISION DISMISSING THE CASE AGAINST DIRECTOR GENERAL SYJUCO ARE THE SAME REASONS THAT APPLY TO US. WE WERE ACCUSED OF PRACTICALLY THE SAME CHARGES.
THERE IS SPECULATION AND THERE MAY BE OTHER SPECULATIONS. THERE ARE A NUMBER OF ASSUMPTIONS. THERE MAY EVEN BE MISINFORMATION. PEOPLE CANNOT LOOK AT THE SITUATION OBJECTIVELY IF THEY ARE NOT PROPERLY INFORMED.
SO I AM APPEALING FOR YOUR HELP.
PLEASE HELP ME (and my colleagues) TO GET PEOPLE TO KNOW THE REAL SCORE, BASED ON FACTUAL DOCUMENTS, EVIDENCES AND ARGUMENTS BASED ON LAW AND PRECEDENTS.
There is an email address in GOOGLE (Gmail) where you can find the facts of the case. You can find a short summary of the events that have happened so far to quickly walk you through the case. Aside from this, you will also find 1) a copy of the ORIGINAL DECISION of the Office of the President dismissing us from the service, 2) a copy of my first Motion for Reconsideration, 3) a copy of the Decision of the Office of the President DISMISSING the case against Director General Syjuco, and 4) a copy of my supplemental Motion for Reconsideration (based on the decision acquitting Director General Syjuco).
HERE’S HOW YOU CAN HELP ME (and my colleagues). Please go to GOOGLE (http://www.google.com) and click on Gmail. When you see the log-in window please type this USERNAME – pendingcase. For the PASSWORD please type – pendingc@se. This will take you to the email window where you can see Documents at the upper left side of the screen. Click on Documents and you will see all the FILES relevant to the case which I enumerated above. Click on any of these files to view their content. Other documents related to the case may also provide additional facts and perspectives to the case.
I HOPE YOU CAN SPARE A FEW MINUTES OF YOUR TIME TO READ THESE FILES.
HERE’S HOW YOU CAN FURTHER HELP.

KINDLY FORWARD THIS MESSAGE TO ALL YOUR EMAIL CONTACTS, WHOEVER THEY ARE
. I BELIEVE THAT THIS IS A BETTER WAY OF GETTING MORE PEOPLE TO KNOW THE REAL SCORE. THIS MAY ALSO BE A GOOD WAY TO GET SOME UNEXPECTED RESULTS. I HAVE APPROACHED A LOT OF PEOPLE, INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE, PEOPLE WHOM I THOUGHT MAY BE ABLE TO PUSH THE CASE A LITTLE. BUT I AM SAD TO SAY THAT ALL THESE EFFORTS HAVE BEEN IN VAIN JUDGING FROM THE REALITY THAT THE CASE HAS NOT BEEN MOVING AT ALL FOR ALMOST TWO YEARS NOW.
I KNOW I AM PROBABLY ASKING YOU TOO MUCH, BUT NOW I HAVE ONLY MY FRIENDS TO TURN TO.
MY LAST REQUEST: WHEN YOU FORWARD THIS MESSAGE, PLEASE USE THE Bcc box for the email addresses of your contacts SO THAT THE RECIPIENTS OF THE MESSAGE WILL APPEAR AS “undisclosed r”. PLEASE DO NOT USE THE To box or the Cc box.
MY HEARTFELT GRATITUDE TO YOU. MAY THE GOOD LORD SHOWER YOU WITH HIS BLESSINGS.

Clifford A. Paragua

A Letter from the Office of the Mayor Ismael V. Tumaru

Dear Mr. Orlando Paragua:

Greetings from the Municipal Government of Aparri!

We appreciate that a fellow Aparriano residing in the US – Mr. Condring F. Rapadas is very much concerned about the conservation of our “gacca”. We are gladly informing Mr. Rapadas that to date, it is still available especially during summer but no longer as abundant as it used to be. This is in two distinct species – big and small.“Gacca” gathering is done through a trap called “tako” drawn along the seashore. The municipal government of Aparri under the able leadership of Mayor Ismael V. Tumaru,M.D. had launched a comprehensive coastal resource management to preserve and protect the marine environment and its resources.

For the information of Aparrianos who are residing elsewhere and abroad, we are happy to inform you that Aparri is now a FIRST CLASS MUNICIPALITY. It has gained national prominence in local governance having been conferred the HALL OF FAME AWARD as Most Outstanding Municipality in the Philippines. Many of its programs and projects are dubbed as “good practices” that can be replicated by other LGUs. The MARENU NGA BEVAY, GAWAGAWAYAN NAT TATOLAY (A Clean Sea, A Healthy Community) program successfully led to the conversion of the notorious seashore of Punta, San Antonio and Maura which was dubbed as the “longest toilet in the world” into a tourist spot and destination. It merited the GALING POOK AWARD as one of the 10 outstanding programs of LGUs in the Philippines. These feats and more were attained under the leadership of the incumbent Mayor Ismael V. Tumaru, M.D.

In order to promote tourism and further boost economic progress and development, construction of the Public Park is on-going. The Aparri Airport was reopened last May 11,2009 for light planes (10 sitters) of Cyclone Airways doing test flights of student pilots. Negotiations for the rebuilding of the seaport (pier) into an international facility are underway. Target is at the end of the year.

Meanwhile, the Municipality of Aparri, Cagayan is also currently negotiating in behalf of the Aparri Water District under General Manager Ramon E. Gorospe for the installation of a sophisticated water system with Chairman Prospero Pichay of the Local Water Utilities Administration (LWUA).

The facility will be composed of either a Water Clarifier Filtration or Reverse Osmosis System. The former is a machine that purifies water direct from the Apagonan Creek while the latter is a desalination instrument that can purify water from the Cagayan River or from the sea. The project which is in line with the government’s 10-point agenda of adequate potable water supply is intended to both the Eastern and Western barangays of the municipality.

If completed, the water system can generate 4,000 cubic meters of water per day which is the demand of the current population. As of now, the Aparri Water District is catering to 1,360 households with a daily supply of 760 cubic meters. The project which will be implemented in 3 phases costs Php 50M to be funded by LWUA.

These and more are good reasons for every Aparriano to be proud of their beloved hometown.

Alma P. Cadiente-Diaros, Community Affairs Asst. II

An Open Letter – Reginald B. Tamayo

Dear Friends, Relatives, and Countrymen:

I am REGINALD BALISI TAMAYO, 45, married, a public servant and a humble Christian.

I am writing to inform you that I am running for the Senate in the 2010 elections under the ANG KAPATIRAN Party. I expect a certain amount of skepticism on your part. In fact many asked me these questions- “Isn’t that a little unrealistic? Isn’t that a wishful thinking?” I also asked the same questions a few times. I was clueless. By default, I dismissed my nomination to be a Senatorial candidate as a joke. I thought that I was not prepared tore-shape my life and that of my family by running into a national office.

However, as many put it, there’s a reason for everything. It is in this spirit that I am inviting you to read my story why I am taking this long shot for a Senate seat.

Looking Back (excerpts)
: completed AB Philosophy in 1985 at the University of the Philippines
: father was a clerk-typist and my mother worked as a gasoline girl
: hired as a lecturer at the Lyceum of Aparri
: appointed at the young age of 21 as Dean of Liberal Arts and Dean of Student Affairs of the Lyceum of Aparri
: invited by politicians to join local politics to represent the youth sector
: ran for municipal councilor but lost

The Transition (excerpts)
: sworn in as an appointed municipal councilor to serve the unexpired term of another councilor who passed away
: tried my new life as a public servant to respond the many concerns of the towns people that need to be addressed squarely thru legislation
: still taught at the Lyceum of Aparri as a part-time college instructor

Period of Achievements (excerpts)
: awarded as Outstanding Municipal Councilor of Cagayan by the Philippine Councilors League
: pioneered many innovative legislative measures ranging from giving awards to outstanding public school teachers, scholarship program for the poor but deserving students,instituting a local newspaper, to many and varied ordinances that benefit the Aparrianos
: wrote two books for the barangay officials (Barangay First) and the Sangguniang Kabataan (Empowering the Sangguniang Kabataan)
: shared my views on local and national issues thru the Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Star, Philippine Free Press, and other major dailies
: regular columnist of the Northern Forum of Tuguegarao City, Guru Press of Tabuk City, and several others
: posted my articles in my site at http://reginaldtamayo.blogspot.com/
: ran for the vice-mayoral post but lost
: ran again as municipal councilor of Aparri in the 2004 elections and won a seat, a position which I still hold up to this time

Time to have a breather (excerpts)
: early this year, decided not to run in the forthcoming local elections
: my wife and children egged on me to continue with my law studies and I did God’s providential hand (excerpts)
: have been praying to God that He will pluck me out from the noisy politics and put my life in a more quiet place. God answered my prayer quite differently
: someone nominated me as Senatorial candidate under ANG KAPATIRAN Party
: severely grilled in an interview on national, political and moral issues; passed with flying colors and I was named 7th Senatorial candidate of the party
: don’t have any personal resources to sustain my candidacy but I sincerely believe I have you on my side, and with the guidance and provision from God I will not be another Jonah but to willingly accept the call and the challenge to run as a Senator in 2010 elections because there is no hiding place and hideout from God.

Thank you.
REGINALD BALISI TAMAYO, Member, Sangguniang Bayan

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