Green group says NO to pro-mining candidates, endorses green champions
Press Statement | Alyansa Tigil Mina | March 9, 2022
Alyansa Tigil Mina called on the public today not to vote for electoral candidates who have strong links with the mining industry, saying that they may already be compromised once elected into positions of power.
According to ATM, candidates who have either links to mining companies or are heavily in favor of mining are: Alan Peter Cayetano, Mark Villar, Jejomar Binay, Richard Gordon, Win Gatchailan and Gibo Teodoro.
At the same time, the alliance reconfirmed that it is endorsing four senatorial green candidates: Senator Risa Hontiveros, Senator Leila De Lima, Rep. Teddy Baguilat,and Atty. Chel Diokno, noting that their track record and positions align with the group’s agenda.
In the online forum organized by ATM as part of its Mining Hell Week, ATM Chair Rene Pamplona underscored the importance of engaging in the May 2022 elections. “The May 2022 elections will determine the fate of destructive mining – whether it will continue unfettered or whether reforms shall be put in place in order to protect the environment and mining-affected communities.”
Pamplona explained that in South Cotabato, the local government is seeking to amend the Environmental Code that bans open-pit mining. “Two public hearings have been conducted and we are demanding that the LGU retains the ban on open-pit mines. Of course we know that the shifting positions of the Sanggunian members and even LGUs are also related to the elections, We cannot discount the fact that at this point money talks, and mining companies have all the means to fund campaigns” he said.
Meanwhile, Beth Manggol of Marinduque Council for Environmental Concerns (MACEC) emphasized the need to elect candidates who would advance the cause of the environment and communities. “We have experienced the terrible tragedy of the
Marcopper mining disaster and to this day we are suffering from its harmful impacts. We want to prevent a similar occurrence and this can only be done if we have leaders who will institute policies for the environment and communities,” she said.
“We are actively engaged in the 2022 elections as we popularize our calls for rational mining policies towards national development and get the commitments of candidates on environmental concerns so we can hold them accountable once elected,” said Jaybee Garganera, ATM National Coordinator. “We shall campaign for candidates supporting green bills and expose those with vested interests in the mining industry,” he concluded.
ATM will release its full senatorial slate on April 8 after it finishes its research on the positions and track record of candidates concerning mining and the environment.
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