MAC: Mines and Communities

Indigenous People Scores Vs. TVI Before Top Government and Mining Company Officials

Published by MAC on 2002-05-17

Indigenous People Scores Vs. TVI Before Top Government and Mining Company Officials

Tito Natividad Fiel, coordinator of DCMI - 17th May 2002

Sitio Canatuan, Tabayo, Siocon, Zamboanga del Norte, Philippines - The Siocon Subanon Association Inc. (SSAI) led by Timuay Jose "Boy" Anoy made their feelings clear against TVI on the morning of May 8, before the top government and mining company officials here.

Onsino Mato, Secretary of SSAI, and Boy Anoy, the President of the said Indigenous Peoples organization maintained their statements that their rights as Indigenous Peoples have been violated by TVI Resource Development Philippines, a Canadian mining firm.

TVI has employed an economic and food blockade, establishing a structure in the area without securing the free, prior and informed consent from the legal and legitimate holder of Certificate of Ancestral Domain Claim (CADC), which is the SSAI, and violently dispersed the peaceful protest of SSAI against the presence of the the said company.

Anoy and Mato took the opportunity of voicing their sentiments before the following Philippine Government and Mining Company officials: Cliford James, TVI Pacific Group of Companies President; Jesus Duresa, Preisidential Assistant for Mindanao; Ging Dilis of National Anti-Poverty Commission (NAPC); Atty. Ruben Lingating Commssioner of National Commission on Indigenous People; Manuel Mamawag Regional Director of Region 9 of Commission on Human Rights here and many more officials.

Cliford James shook his head when Mato and Anoy spoke strongly before the said officials on the sentiments of their people against the company.These government officials are members of the Task Force Canatuan created by the Philippine Goverment to investigate the alleged human rights violations committed by TVI against the Subanon Indigenous People .

The Task Force was created after the Philippine Goverment received the letter from United Nations Working Group on Indigenous Population, when Onsino Mato of SSA spoke before the UNWGIP on July 2001 meeting in Geneva Switzerland against the TVI human rights violations.

DCMI Bishop in Charge Speaks in Support of Local Government Effors Vs. TVI

Pisawak, Siocon, Zamboanga del Norte, Philippines - Bishop Jose R. Manguiran of the Diocese of Dipolog, a Bishop in charge of the DIOPIM Committee on Mining Issues spoke on May 11 here in support of Municipal Government efforts versus TVI for committing severe human rights violations against the indigenous people subanon in Sitio Canatuan

Bishop Manguiran encouraged the participants of an Environmental Summit called by Mayor Ceasar Soriano of Siocon to protect the environment and the livelihood of the Subanon indigenous people .

However, Tito Natividad Fiel, coordinator of DCMI also told the crowd that TVI has no capacity for (effective) environmental protection if it commences its operation in Canatuan, because it is just a junior mining company in Canada which has no experience of mining operations except exploration.

He said, even the big mining companies, which have a track record of mining operations from different countries have failed to address environmental protection, just like what happened at Philex Mining in Sibutad, Zamboanga del Norte, Marcopper (Placer Dome) in Marinduque province and other mining companies in the Philippines.

The environmental summit was attended by all barangay officials and consituents from 26 barangays of municipality of Siocon.

The municipal government here is gathering thousands of signatures for the total ousting of TVI from Siocon. Even the Catholic parish church here is also initiating a petition for the same cause.

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