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GARCIA-HERNANDEZ, Bohol – Officials of the Philippine Mining Service Corp (PMSC) and Bohol Limestone Corp (BLC) said they welcome the planned inquiry inaidof legislation to be conducted by SangguniangPanlalawigan over limestone operations here which allegedly contradicts with eco-tourism thrusts of the province.
This came following the SP’s approval of the measure to conduct an inquiry as a result of the privilege speech of neophyte 3rd district provincial Board Member Kristine Alexie Tutor, questioning the company’s operations.
Engr. PaulEspina, PMSC resident manager, said in exclusive interview that this limestone mining is a large scale one allowed tooperate under certain existing national laws.
Espina, meanwhile, said that the company has overshot its target of 2.7 million tons of limestone to 3 million in 2017. It is eyeing 3.5 million of processed limestone next year.Hence, it has to expand its operations within its area of jurisdiction allowed by law to meet the requirement.
It will recalled that Tutor, tourism committee chairperson, tagged the limestone mining in this town is in conflict with the province’s goal of eco-cultural tourism thrusts.
In her privilege speech late this year, she said, “With Bohol as an eco-tourism destination, this scenario (referring to imestone mining) is inconsistent with our vision in the province.”
She arrived at this conclusion following she flew over the mountains where the mining operated by Bohol Mine Corp located here.
“That 15-minute trip aborad Air Juan from Tagbilaran City to barangay Panas (Candijay town), we were able to to see the scenic places of the coastal towns, However, there is one thing that caught our attention. The outcome of the mining of Garcia-hernandez. It was an alarming site to see it from the top,” she lamented.
She then raised to following concerns before her colleagues in the SangguniangPanlalawigan: “With this large scale mining operation of Bohol limestone corporation, how long will they operate? To what extent are their mining claims? Is this a lifetime contract until all out mountains are bared?
Ëvery operation has its restrictions and limitations, maybe it’s time to revisit them and let the public know what is the rehabilitation plan. I have heard the qualms of the people that have died down in silence and I have seen it personally which pushed me to this piece, she added.
Her concern was referred to the Committee of the Whole instead of appropriately to environment committee chaired by BM AgapitoAvenido.
As of this writing, no meeting to tackle this issue was conducted yet by said committee. (rvo)
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