Home POLITICS & GOVERNANCE City Demolition of illegal structures in Barangay Sta. Monica sought

Demolition of illegal structures in Barangay Sta. Monica sought

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The City Council, in a resolution on Monday, called for the demolition of all newly and illegally constructed structures within the coastal and mangrove area of Purok Magkaisa in Barangay Sta. Monica.

The demolition had earlier been sought by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (DENR-CENRO).

“May mga structures na kailangan i-demolish, ‘yong mga illegal occupants na umu-occupied doon sa mga pag-aari ng estado. Lumalabas na parang kabute na dumarami ‘yong mga problema natin na may kinalaman sa mga illegal occupants sa mga pag- aari ng estado,” Councilor Nesario Awat, who initiated the resolution, said.

“Ang DENR-CENRO ay nagpalabas ng isang resolution requesting Mayor Lucilo R. Bayron issue a demolition order on the illegally constructed structures within the mangrove area of Barangay Sta. Monica. Ito ay sa kadahilanan na reklamo ng isang tao,” he said.

Awat told Palawan News in a phone interview Tuesday afternoon that the matter was brought before the city council as portions were found to be within the “mangrove and timberland area.”

The said area was supposed to be a “relocation site” for the members of Hugpong Maralita of Mangingisda in Barangay Sta, Monica.

“Ito ay patungkol sa resolution 10-2021 ng kanilang samahan na ‘yon ay gawin nilang relocation site sa kanilang mga miyembro. Sa pagdinig lumabas na ‘yan ay mangrove area. Pangalawa masasabi natin na timberland ‘yan,” he said.

He said the Council Against Squatting Syndicate and Professional Squatters (CASSAPS) has yet to take any action on the issue.

“Sa ngayon ay wala pang action ‘yong ating CASSAPS o si Mayor patungkol dito. Tinanong natin ‘yong grupo na kung saan ay nahati na rin sila sa dalawa – ‘yong isa ay sa pamumuno ni Antonio Buenaceda, ‘di ko alam kung sya talaga ang pinuno pero sya ang binabanggit dito sa papel na kung saan ay lumalabas pareho silang interesado sa lupa pero in both cases parehong nasa mangrove and timberland sila,” he said.

Awat said that they have agreed to only demolish the newly constructed structures within the said barangay.

“Tinanong ko sila kung anong masasabi nila sa resolution ng task force CENRO, ang sabi nila okay lang sila do’n pero sana kung i-dedemolish ay ‘yong mga bago lang. Hindi muna sila isama at ‘yon ang nakapagkasunduan na yong ide-demolish lang ay ‘yong mga bagong structures. Yong mga luma ay hindi na isasama, ‘yon ang action taken ng city council,” he said.

When asked about the number of households illegally occupying the area, he said he was uncertain about the figures. Awat also questioned DENR who is responsible for the enforcement of environmental laws, citing that they are “not active” in terms of demolition of illegally constructed structures within the protected areas.

“Alam mo naman marami ‘yan, marami ng nag babahay-bahay kaya nga sabi natin ano ba ang ginagawa ng DENR sa mga illegally constructed houses within the timberland and mangrove area. Ang sabi nila wala. Ang ginagawa nila kino-coordinate nila sa local government unit para mademolish,” he said. “Hindi sila active in terms of demolition kasi hindi ganon ‘yong policy ng opisina nila,” he added.

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