Rio Tuba Nickel Mining Corporation (RTNMC), a subsidiary company of Nickel Asia Corporation, is among the first responders in providing support to local government units to combat the surge of Covid 19 cases in Palawan.
During the pandemic onset, a total of P5.2 million worth of relief assistance was disbursed from its 2020 Annual Social Development and Management Program (ASDMP) funds to purchase 1,322 bags of rice and other relief assistance that benefitted 10,773 households in Bataraza town.
The support continued while Palawan transitioned to general community quarantine (GCQ) which included another P3 million subsidy to the local government of Bataraza.
“Kami ay nakikiisa sa ating gobyerno sa pagtulong sa pagsugpo nang pagkalat ng COVID-19. We have conducted relief operations across Bataraza to extend help to our kababayans during this health crisis,” said Reynaldo Dela Rosa, RTNMC community relations manager.
RTNMC also donated a total of P6.4 million to the provincial government of Palawan for the procurement of rice for communities in need in various towns of the province.
RTNMC and Coral Bay Nickel Corporation responded to the recent rise of Covid 19 in Bataraza by donating 60 beds and mattresses for the quarantine facilities. Each bed amounts to P4,000 funded by the Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) funds of both companies.
“Kami sa RTN, bilang private sector ay grateful na makapag-extend ng tulong sa pamamagitan ng aming SDMP funds hindi lamang sa aming host and neighboring communities kundi maging sa buong lalawigan ng Palawan sa panahon ng health crisis,” resident manager Engr. Cynthia Rosero said.
The LGU of Bataraza is the first among the 23 municipalities in Palawan to draw funds for its vaccination plan allocating P30 million. The plan was developed in partnership with RTNMC and CBNC.
NAC through its subsidiaries – Cagdianao Mining (CMC), Dinapigue Mining (DMC), Hinatuan Mining (HMC), Rio Tuba Nickel Mining (RTN) and Taganito Mining (TMC)Â with Emerging Power, Inc. (EPI) and Cordillera Exploration Inc. (CExCI)- spent more than P50 Million pesos from the realigned SDMP and CSR funds.
NAC used the accumulated P50M fund to buy sacks of rice, food packs, vitamins, and medical supplies such as alcohol and hand sanitizers to thousands of families and front liners.
Some of the funds were used to build isolation and disinfecting facilities and fund the extensive information campaign about the prevention of COVID 19 necessary to educate the communities about the pandemic and how they can be protected from the virus.
It also turned over a separate CSR budget of P18M to the Philippine Red Cross (PRC) to build a molecular testing laboratory in Surigao City to support early detection of COVID-19 cases.
According to Mines and Geosciences Bureau MIMAROPA Regional Director Roland De Jesus, it is good thing that in some communities there is mining that provide support to the communities affected by the strict government restrictions.
“It’s a good thing that in those localities where there are mining, this is one benefit of mining,” he said.
The mining industry has been a steadfast partner of the government, pushing the economy to balance. During the pandemic, the sector continues to employ communities that helped in the operation of the local economy.
In Palawan, the mining industry has contributed P 34.593 M- relief goods that benefited 71, 229 households, 316 front liners. This fund came from SDMP’s unspent budget and carried over to 2020 SDMP to help the impact and non-impact communities.