MAGANES: Peoples’ victories

July 5, 2015 at 4:24 pm Leave a comment


vir
Last week, there were three events that marked the victories of people in their quest to fight for their rights.

One is in Sison where the “cease and desist” order issued by the provincial government for the repair of a portion of provincial road was lifted in principle subject to some conditions.
Second was the election of new set of officers of Parents, Teachers Association of Bayambang Central School and third, the order of the Mines Geosciences Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Region I upholding its previous order to confiscate the illegally mined “black sand or magnetite” in Lingayen town.
In Sison, a portion of the provincial road was started to be repaired in order to be in equal elevation with that of the newly constructed satellite market. The ground work was started last May 12 after the municipal government under Mayor Mina Pangasinan wrote a letter last May 8 to Governor Amado T. Espino Jr./Provincial Engineer’s Office informing them of the plan.
Instead of acting of their request, Governor Espino through the Provincial Legal Officer Geraldine Baniqued issued a “cease and desist” order prompting the municipal government to stop the operations of the project.

Mayor Pangasinan said it had been the practice in the past to repair the provincial road portion in their town but no permit had been sought from the provincial government. She said that they will comply whatever requirements the provincial government will impose so the project won’t be delayed, especially that rainy season is in the offing.

For more than a month, the “cease and desist order” stayed. Last July 1, a public hearing was conducted. It was attended by Legal Officer Baniqued, 5th District Board Member Danilo C. Uy, Provincial Engineer Antonette Delos Santos with Espino’s media men in tow. After thorough explanation of the project, residents of Sison finally asked for continuance of the project . Mayor Mina requested them to wait until the municipal government has completed the project implementation.
Right then and there, Baniqued lifted the “cease and desist order” in principle citing conditions to be followed by the municipal government.
Board Member Uy seemed to be sitting on his duty as the representative of 5th District. Why was he not able to intercede in behalf of the municipal government of Sison when he learned of such situation? It appeared that he has detached himself from the people of Sison when he said, ” Isang saglit lang yan na sasabihin ko kay Governor, i-lift na niya ang “cease and desist” order.
Was it not his obligation and duty to work for the benefits of his 5th District’s constituents? Why was it that he did not lift a finger so that the situation would have been corrected earlier? I heard that Uy is eyeing the mayoralty post of Sison in 2016 elections. Was his silence a signal to put the municipal government in a crippling situation to his advantage?
In Bayambang, Filipinas Alcantara, the President of the Parents-Teachers Association (PTA) was elected anew during the elections held last June 30. She’s in the frontline of contesting the actions of the municipal government in transferring Bayambang Central School in Bical Norte village, in a property owned by a businessman Willy Chua. Leading the parents, Alcantara wanted the old site of the school to be restored and not swapped with the property of Chua, considering the historical importance of the school with Gabaldon buildings in it.
Even with apparent maneuvering from Mayor Camacho’s camp, Alcantara still regained the PTA presidency along with nine others in the 15- member Board of Directors. The parents have spoken through their ballots. They wanted to go back to the school’s original site and will fight for it no end.
Finally, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau of Region I Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) sustained its order for the confiscation of the “illegally mined black sand” in Lingayen. Regional Director Carlos Tayag in his order dated May 15, 2015 has denied the motion for reconsideration filed by Xypher Builders, Inc. (contractor of black sand mining) for its decision dated March 10, 2015.
Tayag, in his order, said the arguments raised by Xypher Builders, Inc. are untenable, citing violations of the DENR administrative orders and mining laws.
The action of DENR has put an end to the provincial government’s vicious denials that no “illegal black sand mining” took place in Pangasinan. DENR proved that indeed it existed for years since 2010.

I hope Governor Espino will accede to such order and accept the fact that the provincial government has ventured into such “illegal black sand” mining activity that was paid dearly by the ouster of Provincial Administrator Rafael Baraan and Alvin Bigay of the Provincial Housing and Urban Development Office.

The three events manifested that people’s right when voiced out properly will reap positive actions from the Lord above.
(For comments, email me at emperorvirgil@yahoo.com. Visit my blog The Roving Pen at http://www.virgilmaganes.wordpress.com. For radio commentaries, tune in to Bombo Radyo Dagupan, 1125 KHZ, Tuesdays, Thursdays and Saturdays at 6:30-7:00 AM- ” GISING PANGASINAN”)

Entry filed under: News.

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