ATM Press Statement: DENR must immediately close Didipio mines in Kasibu, Nueva Vizcaya
June 18, 2019
DENR must immediately close Didipio mines in Kasibu, Nueva Vizcaya
FTAA of OGPI must not be renewed
Quezon City – Environmental alliance Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM) supports the call of affected communities and local government officials from Nueva Vizcaya for the immediate closure of the Didipio mines in Kasibu town, Nueva Vizcaya province. ATM is aware that the mining contract (under Financial and Technical Assistance Agreement No. 1 or FTAA #1) of Oceana Gold Philippines, Inc. (OGPI) is set to expire on June 19, 2019.
We call on Pres. Rodrigo Duterte to immediately rule in favor of mining-affected communities on the appeal submitted by OGPI to the Office of the President. President Duterte must stop the destructive open-pit mining operations of OGPI and serve justice to the residents of Brgy. Didipio in Kasibu, Nueva Vizcaya.
The mine audit conducted by DENR in 2016 has allegedly revealed that OGPI not only violated several environmental laws, but also failed to comply with its contractual obligations to deliver social development to residents affected by its mining operations. We demand that the results of this mine audit be disclosed to the public immediately.
Our alliance fully supports the petition of the Didipio Earth Savers Movement (DESAMA) that full rehabilitation and complete compensation to all affected residents must be implemented by OGPI as soon as possible, and immediately after mine closures.
ATM demands that DENR must not entertain any application for FTAA renewal of OGPI. Our group believes that OGPI has committed serious violations of Philippine environmental laws, including destruction of watershed, pollution of water sources, and reduced access to water by residents; failing to secure the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of indigenous peoples; failure to deliver reforestation promises; disregard of the provincial land use plan, including illegal closure of a municipal road; threatening biodiversity in the Caraballo-Palali Mountain range, a Priority Conservation Area.
Moreover, the human rights of residents in Didipio have been violated and abused, as concluded by the Commission on Human Rights, when it issued its Resolution last 2011. The CHR has recommended to the Philippine government to consider withdrawing the mining contract of OGPI.
There is no more excuse for the continued mining operations of OGPI in Nueva Vizcaya.
For more information:
Jaybee Garganera - ATM National Coordinator (+63917) 549.82.18 / email@example.com