Narra mayor Gerandy Danao said on Thursday he is still undecided on whether to allow the DMCI coal plant facility construction to proceed in his hometown, or block it by not issuing a mayor’s permit to the project.

Mayor Danao said he wants to meet first with DMCI officials to learn more about the project. He also said he wants to seek guidance from Palawan Governor Jose Alvarez. Gov. Alvarez has been supportive of the coal plant, citing its economic benefit.

“Aalamin natin kung ano po ang mga positibo at negatibong mangyayari saka tayo magde-desisyon kung ano po ba ang kalalabasan nito,” Mayor Danao told Palawan News in a phone interview.

“Kailangan ko rin po munang ipaalam kay governor kung ang magiging desisyon po ba natin ay tama o mali,” he added.

“Nasa gitna po tayo ng kritikal na kalagayan. Ipinarating ko na rin po ‘yan kay gov. (Governor Alvarez). Hinihintay ko po ang aksyon ni gob kung ano ang magiging aksyon,” Danao added.

When asked about what are the positive and negative impacts of the coal-fired power plant in Narra, Danao admitted he is unaware of the issue.

Danao added however that the company has not yet applied for a mayor’s permit.

Earlier, DENR director Henry Adornado, told Palawan News in a phone interview it is Danao’s prerogative to accept or reject the project.

“The authority to issue the mayor’s permit and business permit is vested in the mayor, not to other government officials,” Adornado said.

The proposed 15-megawatt coal-fired power plant was recently issued its environmental compliance certificate (ECC) by the DENR, amidst protests against the project.

Adornado pointed out however that the ECC for the project “is not in itself a permit” but a “planning tool” for the proponent to follow.

Adornado said included in the ECC is an agreement and advise that the proponent must secure all other government permits prior to the implementation of its project.

“Kapag hindi nila issue-han ‘yan [ang DMCI ng mayor’s permit], hindi magpo-proceed ‘yan. ‘Pag iyan ay nag-establish ng structure, definitely kailangan nila ng building permit na kukunin sa munisipyo, and in the absence of it, hindi iyan makakapag-proceed,” Adornado said.

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