NARRA, Palawan — Barangay Bato-Bato captain Ernesto Ferrer said Thursday that the ongoing construction of the fish port in his area is not illegal and belied claims it is linked to the coal-fired power plant by DMCI Power Corporation (DPC).
Ferrer said in an exclusive interview with Palawan News that the port project is not connected with the controversial coal plant but is part of the infrastructure development programs in Bato-Bato in preparation for Narra’s bid for cityhood.
“Kung sakaling mapatunayan nila na DMCI ‘yan, kasuhan nila ako or ipakulong nila ako. Hindi ‘yan DMCI. Kung sakaling maging city ang Narra, gusto kong handa ang Bato-Bato na maging munisipyo,” he said.
In his “long term development plan” which he said started in 2013, Ferrer showed several infrastructure projects under the Social Development and Management Plan (SDMP) under funds by Citi Nickel Mines and Development Corp. (CNMDC).
In Resolution No. 35, Series of 2019, the Bato-Bato barangay council in October 2019 endorsed the 6,234-square meter fish landing port project which consequently resulted in gaining Provincial Permit No. 045315-11 issued by the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office (CENRO) Quezon-Narra Station.
The permit issued by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) was forwarded and received by the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development (PCSD) and the Philippine Ports Authority (PPA) on November 5, 2019.
Ferrer said he was surprised upon seeing the video published online showing the unannounced visit made by Narra mayor Gerandy Danao at the site.
“Mali ‘yong impormante niya,” Ferrer said, insisting that he sent him a text message on Wednesday night to apologize for his failure to inform him.
“Nagtext ako sa kanya kagabi at nag-sorry na ‘di sya nasabihan,” Ferrer said.
Ferrer, however, clarified that the documents were not provided to the Mayor’s Office but were forwarded to MENRO, CENRO, PCSD, and PPA.
Danao, through his secretary Lemuel Mante, when asked to comment on Ferrer’s stand, confirmed no closure order was issued saying, “Ipapatawag pa namin ‘yong mga different offices involved upang malinawan ang lahat.”