BOAC, Marinduque – In correlation to the March 24, 1996 commemoration, the Marinduque Council for Environmental Concerns (MACEC) is going to conduct a forum today March 29 on the current directions, developments and challenges being presented by the ongoing situation brought about by the Marcopper mine tailings tragedy.
MACEC already had a discussion last March 24 and offered Mass last Friday with the Boac chapter in memory of said disaster in the province. Based on municipal ordinance no. 190 s. 2015 sponsored by then Councilor Miguel Magalang, “An Ordinance recognizing the March 24, 1996 Boac River Mining Disaster as a significant Historical Infamy in the Municipality of Boac, declaring a Memorial Day for Environmental Day for Environmental Justice.” The aforementioned ordinance also authorized the installation of historical markers in Brgy. HInapulan and in the river bank within the Boac town proper area.
The objectives of the Rights of Nature Forum are as follows: to visit the impact of mining and the quest for justice 28 years after the Marcopper mine spillage in Boac river on March 24, 1996; to give the mining affected individuals and plaintiffs a psycho social support intended to address experiences of psycho, emotional signs of distress due to the long overdue quest for justice; and to instill in the consciousness of the mining affected residents, that the mining companies still have culpability for the compensation and rehabilitation of the affected environment.
“Today more than ever is the opportunity to make sense of our ongoing struggle for environmental justice. In particular, due to the many challenges of the legal processes and procedures, the Writ of Kalikasan cases is still ongoing at the Court of Appeals. The case gets old as well as two plaintiffs from Boac, so far without case resolution,” Fr. Arvin Madla, MACEC Board of Trustee chairperson said in a letter.
MACEC executive secretary and secretariat head, Beth Manggol would introduce participants and guests and provide some orientation and set the objectives. Then the Boac town Mayor Armi Carrion is expected to give some remarks along with the Diocese of Boac Bishop Marcelino Antonio Maralit. Meanwhile, Dr Vangie Mandia and Dr. Catherine Delle Sadiwa Cruz would be giving an update “Revisiting Impacts on Mining in the Municipality of Boac, 28 years after the infamous mine spill at Boac River.” Then the provincial vice governor and MACEC Board of Trustee Lyn Angeles would be giving an update on the status of cases and the quest for justice.
In addition, there would be an input on what is heavy metal, its sources and precautionary measures by Dr. Rachel Rowena Garcia, the provincial Department of Health officer. There would also be some film screening about rights of nature. By Randy T. Nobleza