My Google Page Rank

Unabated illegal gold mining in Zamboanga del Sur continues

PDFPrintE-mail

The unabated illegal mining of gold continues in the town of Bayog in the southern Filipino province of Zamboanga del  Sur.
And the smuggling of weapons and chemicals used in the manufacture of improvised explosives, and cyanide and mercury by alleged financiers of the illegal mine trade has become more rampant due to the absence of regular military and police patrols in the town’s Balabag mountain.
Just this year, communist rebels have seized army officers travelling in a truck in Bayog and freed them later after confiscating their weapons and burning their vehicle.

Balabag is where thousands of workers, including child laborers many from other towns and provinces, operate without fear. The destruction of the mountain and the hazards of unsafe use of cyanide and mercury added to the long woes of residents in the town who are dependent on fishing and agriculture as their source of livelihood.

Illegal miners have blasted the mountain to make tunnels where workers gather rocks and deliver or sell them to rod mill operators who pay them P20 per bag. Tens of dozens of rod mills are mostly built under wooden houses of illegal miners where they are processed using cyanide, mercury and nitric acid to extract the gold from crushed rocks.

The whole of Balabag is a danger zone because it is prone to landslides and rock falls, according to the Mines and Geosciences Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources. But despite repeated warnings for illegal miners to abandon their trade for safety reasons, financiers have widened their operations, employing more workers recruited from as far as Davao province and nearby areas.

There were also reports that some municipal officials are allegedly involved or financing the illegal mining activities in Balabag. The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has ordered an investigation into these reports, according to Leo Santillan, a spokesmanfor the Zamboanga del Sur provincial government.

“Illegal mining activities in Balabag are a big concern not only to human health, but the environment as well. As a matter of fact, there is already a resolution from the Zamboanga del Sur Provincial Board to investigate municipal officials reportedly engaged in illegal mining as per order of the DILG. The situation in Balabag is alarming,” Santillan said.

At least six villages around Balabag, including Depore which has political jurisdiction over the mountainous area, have already passed separate resolution urging the local government to put a stop to the rampant illegal mining there due to the health hazards and dangers posed by tunnels and landslides.
Depore village council man Ernesto Mancao said their water sources are polluted due to the hazardous and toxic chemicals illegal miners used in Balabag.

“Look at our streams, the water is now yellowish and that is because of the chemicals used by these illegal miners. We have been telling the government to put a stop to these illegal activities,” Mancao said.

He said the illegal mining activities brought deaths and miseries to a lot of families because of the unsafe mining practice in Balabag.
“How many more lives must perish before we can act and totally put a stop to illegal mining? I am appealing to you our beloved President Noynoy Aquino to hear us and help us put a stop to these activities in Balabag for the sake of our children and their future,” he said.

by: Al Jacinto/Mindanao Examiner




Related news items:
Newer news items:
Older news items:

Add comment


Security code
Refresh

Guard loses motorcycle to robbers

19 Nov 2018 Hits:24 Be the first to comment!

A security guard of a telecommunication company was robbed by three suspects wearing bonnets who took his motorcycle at the PLDT tower site in Barangay Mercedes, Zamboanga City on Saturday. According to police report, the victim identified as Ryan Coralat y Delacalsada, 25, single, a resident of Barangay Sangali, was on duty when the suspects arrived and poked a handgun and a knife at him. The victim told the personnel of Police Station 3 that at about 3:40 in the morning, the armed suspects suddenly arrived and took his Honda XRM color black motorcycle bearing plate number SB 8422, then hurriedly sped towards unknown direction after the incident. A thorough investigation is being conducted by the investigator-on-case, PO3 Jova Agustin, to identify the [...] Read more

Prev Next Page:

THANK GOD! It’s FRIDAY!

16 Nov 2018 Hits:87 Be the first to comment!

For the Tetuan Parish, that very common expression means literally just that, for on Friday, November 16, 2018, at 7 in the evening at the Centro Pastoral, the concert UN [...] Read more


Man stabbed in Rio Hondo

16 Nov 2018 Hits:105 Be the first to comment!

A bakery worker was stabbed and wounded by his co-worker in Sitio Hongkong, Barangay Rio Hondo, Zamboanga City on Wednesday night. Police Officer 3 Had-Anuar Edding, investigator-on-case, of Police Station 11 [...] Read more


Three nabbed for illegal drugs

16 Nov 2018 Hits:140 Be the first to comment!

Three persons were arrested when operatives of Police Station 9 seized from them 13 sachets of suspected shabu during a buy-bust operation at Barangay Recodo, Zamboanga City on Thursday dawn. Arrested [...] Read more


DOH 9 conducts training on GI, community-based treatment for PWUDs

15 Nov 2018 Hits:146 Be the first to comment!

The Department of Health Region IX (DOH 9) conducted the Training on General Intervention (GI) and Community-based Treatment Care Services for Person Who Use Drugs (PWUDs) from November 13-15, 2018. With [...] Read more


DENR-EMB 9 conducts SWM plan finalization of ZamPen LGUs

14 Nov 2018 Hits:166 Be the first to comment!

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Environmental Management Bureau (DENR-EMB) Region IX is conducting a 10-year Solid Waste Management (SWM) plan update and finalization of 33 local government units (LGUs) [...] Read more


Man accused of child abuse, arrested

13 Nov 2018 Hits:206 Be the first to comment!

Two teenagers filed a complaint for child abuse against a 55-year-old man at Police Station 7 last Sunday. Ellyn, married, a resident of Barangay Pasonanca, Zamboanga City, averred to the police [...] Read more


Brgy Chair nabs pedicab driver carrying shabu

13 Nov 2018 Hits:147 Be the first to comment!

A delivery boy was arrested in a buy-bust operation conducted by elements of Police Station 4 led by Chief Insp. Hazel Fernandez at Barangay Baliwasan, Zamboanga City  on Sunday. Police identified [...] Read more


Navforwem honors fleet-marine troops for rescue of KV Duterte

13 Nov 2018 Hits:221 Be the first to comment!

The Naval Forces Western Mindanao (Navforwem) has honored sailors, marines, Fleet-Marine personnel and navies for the successful rescue of kidnapped victim (KV) Jose Duterte and exceptional feats in the accomplishment [...] Read more


Police searching for armed man for mauling

12 Nov 2018 Hits:150 Be the first to comment!

A resident of Barangay Mampang, Zamboanga City, is now being hunted by personnel of Police Station 6 for mauling and totting his gun at another person on Sunday. Police report shows [...] Read more


Team Climaco condemns misinformation, fake news

09 Nov 2018 Hits:361 Be the first to comment!

Members of the Team Climaco have strongly criticized and condemned misinformation drive allegedly hatched by their political foes and propagandists, who are desperate to destroy the many and outstanding accomplishments [...] Read more


Man hacked by father-in-law

09 Nov 2018 Hits:163 Be the first to comment!

A man was hacked and wounded by his father-in-law at Sibiktol Drive, Barangay Arena Blanco, Zamboanga City, on Wednesday. The victim was identified as Jarrin Jalmaani y Gadong, married and a [...] Read more


More Filipinos to be engaged in HIV-AIDS awareness drive

08 Nov 2018 Hits:207 Be the first to comment!

The right information on HIV-AIDS will curb the spread of this disease. But putting information out there isn’t enough, a senior government official believes. There has to be constant engagement [...] Read more


CHO: Fear of Dengvaxia prevents children from getting vaccines

07 Nov 2018 Hits:275 Be the first to comment!

Assistant City Health Officer Dr. Kibtiya Uddin reported that the fear of Dengvaxia vaccine has prevented children from getting other types of vaccines during City Hall's weekly press conference on [...] Read more


Army officer, 3 soldiers injured in clash with Abu Sayyaf in Sulu

07 Nov 2018 Hits:319 Be the first to comment!

An Army officer and three more soldiers were wounded in an encounter with Abu Sayyaf terrorists in Sulu province on Monday afternoon. Lt. Col. Gerry Besana,  spokesperson of Western Mindanao Command [...] Read more


Beng distributes relief goods to Triplet fire victims

18 Oct 2018 Hits:273 Be the first to comment!

Mayor Beng Climaco on Wednesday afternoon spearheaded the distribution of relief goods to families displaced by the early dawn fire in Lemon Drive, Triplet, Barangay Canelar. Mayor Climaco, assisted by personnel [...] Read more


DTI reports slight hike in prices of basic goods

18 Oct 2018 Hits:249 Be the first to comment!

Following its continuing monitoring of prices of all consumable goods in the local markets, the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI) has reported a slight increase in the prices of [...] Read more


OCENR preps SWM in barangays, basura run

18 Oct 2018 Hits:228 Be the first to comment!

The Office of the City Environment and Natural Resources (OCENR) is working to strengthen the capacities of local barangays in line with sanitation, particularly solid waste management. Public Services Officer IV [...] Read more


Mayor Beng files candidacy, vows to continue pro-poor programs

17 Oct 2018 Hits:282 Be the first to comment!

In an expected sea of supporters to join her today, popular Mayor Maria Isabelle “Beng” Climaco is scheduled to file her certificate of candidacy for re-election this morning at the [...] Read more