CAGAYAN Journal ( BEN BALCE / Dec 19) - Hundreds of petitioners who converged at the Parish of Gingoog city filed a complaint Friday asking the local government authorities to immediate withdraw the resolution endorsing the “legal logging” activity through an Industrial Forest Management Agreement (IFMA) permit of Southwood Timber Corporation (STC).
Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center-Kasama sa Kalikasan (LRC-CdO) team Leader Carl Cesar C. Rebuta said the petitioners even called for the immediate cancellation of their IFMA.
“We have already signed a petition and collected at least 12,000 signatures to oppose such agreement,” said Rebuta adding that the agreement was undeniably harmful to the environment and especially to the lives and livelihood of thousand others in the whole region.
Rebuta said the complaint with 12,000 signatures was filed at on Friday (
According to Rebuta the undefeatable calamities and political tragedies which have battered the country has left the country in a dismal state.
In his statements sent to this paper, Rebuta said that in the aftermath of the events of the floods Ondoy and Pepeng alone, thousands of Filipinos are left without homes and grieving over loved ones, whether they were actually lost or found.
“In the local scenario, the people of Misamis Oriental are no stranger to these calamities,” said Rebuta.
This year alone, he said massive destruction has been brought to the cities of Cagayan de Oro and Gingoog due to the flashfloods and heavy rains last January and November incidents.
But these destructive incidents will not cease as more and more environmental laws and prohibitions are being blatantly disregarded by various mining and logging corporations, giving way to enormous environmental devastation, according to Rebuta.
The petitioners who signed the complaint were members of the Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center-Kasama sa Kalikasan/Friends of the Earth (LRC-KsK/FoE), Ecology care(Ecop-care), non-government organizations in Misamis Oriental and along with the various communities surrounding the areas of Mt. Balatucan and Mt. Minalwang, all of Misamis Oriental.
“Such agreement (IFMA) will prove to be detrimental not only to the environment but also to our lives, livelihood, homes, families and the entire communities,” said Rebuta.
IFMA agreement will allow the Southwood Timber Corporation (STC) to cut trees in the areas which are deemed in the process of becoming a watershed, which is crucial to the communities’ everyday life.
Under IFMA, he also said that it will enable them to harvest those trees which serve as protection against upcoming calamities and floods which will affect the regions in the future.
Rebuta said that as such agreement of 11,476 hectares which will last for 25 years.
“One can only imagine what kind of calamities and floods our region will have to experience based on the flashfloods we have experienced this year alone,” said Rebuta.
Ben balce's channel/YouTube