Beng firm on mining issue PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 23 April 2014 14:03

Mayor Beng Climaco stands pat on her decision not to allow mining operations in Vitali and any other areas in the city.

This, as issues concerning the grant of a business permit to Atro Mining Vitali Incorporated (AMVI), a mining company in barangay Vitali heat up.

“The City Government stands by its decision not to grant the business permit [to AMVI],” declared City Mayor Beng Climaco Monday, April 21, during her regular press briefing in City Hall.

Climaco stated that the objection to the AMVI operations, a mining firm conducting exploration activities for iron ore, is based on concerns on the detrimental effects of mining on the environment of Vitali, as the proposed mining sites are situated in an identified watershed.

While technically not a declared watershed, the area to be mined in barangay Vitali is nevertheless an identified watershed, and Climaco believes that this natural resource should be protected all the same.

“We are looking at the long term effects on the environment, and how this will deprive the generations of children of Zamboangueños of water if this [watershed] is contaminated by mining,” said Climaco.

Moreover, the Mayor cited Republic Act 7160, or the Local Government Code, as the City Government’s guiding authority in making the final decision regarding the AMVI and its operations, relative the Mining and Geosciences Bureau’s (MGB) granting the mining firm the authority to explore.

“Claro cuando yan cuento kita con el MGB, cosa di ila, el di ila. Cosa del ciudad, del ciudad,” said the Mayor.

While Climaco stands firm by her decision, she stated that she will respect the City Council, should it decide to allow the AMVI to operate in Vitali, but as City Mayor, she is ultimately responsible for the well-being and the future of the children of Zamboanga City.

“In the long term, hinde el MGB el cuida con el maga bata del Zamboanga. El ken cuida kanila ay el maga oficiales elihido de Zamboanga,” she said. — Jasmine Mohammadsali