MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Dapitan Declaration on Mining

Published by MAC on 2002-10-11

Press Release

For verification, please contact:
Dennis Lalata, LRC-KsK National Office
Tel. (02) 928-1372; 436-1101 or Cel. No. 0919-3696457
Jo Villanueva, LRC-KsK Cagayan de Oro Office
Tel. (0882) 272-9853

Anti-mining advocates to launch "The Dapitan Initiative" on October 11

Anti-mining advocates from all over the country will gather at the Rizal Shrine in Dapitan City on October 11 to participate in what has been dubbed as "The Dapitan Initiative". "The Dapitan Initiative" seeks the scrapping of the Philippine Mining Act of 1995 (Republic Act No. 7942) and the formulation of an alternative "People's Mining Act".

The activity is organized by the DIOPIM Committee on Mining Issues (DCMI) - composed of church groups from the cities of Dipolog, Iligan, Ozamiz, Pagadian, Ipil, and Marawi, thus the acronym DIOPIM - and the Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center-Kasama sa Kalikasan (LRC-KsK), a non-government organization which has been involved in the issue of mining for many years.

A highlight of the event is the signing of "The Dapitan Declaration" by prominent individuals representing various sectors of Philippine society. Some of the anti-mining advocates who have already confirmed their participation include the following: Chin-Chin Gutierrez, award-winning actress and environmentalist; Teddy Casiño, activist and BAYAN Secretary General; Dapitan City Mayor Rodolfo Carreon; Bishop Jose Manguiran, Bishop of Dipolog and DCMI Bishop-in-Charge; Bishop Warlito Baldomero, Philippine Independent Church-Ozamiz City; and Atty. Marvic Leonen, Executive Director of LRC-KsK. Leaders of communities adversely affected by mining will also share their experiences.

A ritual calling on the good spirits to be led by the Subanen, an indigenous peoples group in Zamboanga del Norte, will open the event at 8:00 am.

According to the organizers, "The Dapitan Initiative" seeks to encourage discussions among advocates, particularly local community organizations and NGOs on how to address the problem of large-scale mining. They added that the event will be the starting point of a signature campaign seeking to scrap RA 7942.


11 October 2002

We have witnessed the destructive effects of mining on human and other life forms violations of people's rights, fish kills, environmental destruction, pollution, and dreaded diseases which are glaring in the cases of Canatuan in Zamboanga del Norte and the communities in Marinduque. This cannot go on. There are alternative ways of organizing and understanding our world and how we want to live.

We believe in the initiative of committed individuals to convince others and lead to a growing number of advocates.

We declare that given the current state of the mining industry and our current economic and political set up, there can be no sustainable mining as contained in the proposed National Minerals Policy. We commit as individuals, not only to oppose the current legal framework provided by Republic Act Nos. 7942 and 7076 but also to increase public awareness of these issues.

We commit to contribute to do whatever we can as individuals to uphold indigenous people's rights and achieve a more ecologically sound, gender-fair, equitable system of resource management.

We will work for a democratic and consultative process in enacting a new legal framework to achieve a wise stewardship of our natural resources based on the following principles.

Everyone should share in the burden of satisfying resource needs primarily through re-using and recycling existing mineral products.

In land and water use, the concerns of food security, which includes food free from pollution, livelihood production, ecological balance, equity, and social justice should always be the priority.

Only resources that are necessary for domestic use and national industrialization should be utilized. We should develop our own human resources and encourage the evolution of our own appropriate technologies.v Priority should be given to community-based, community-initiated and community-owned stewardship of resources.

There should be no compromise on human rights, dignity and collective identities. At the minimum, we call for:

The immediate cancellation of all existing financial and technical assistance agreements (FTAAs), minerals production sharing agreements (MPSAs), exploration permits, and other mining agreements, licenses and other instruments because they are all based on a highly flawed system;

The scrapping of RA 7942 (Philippine Mining Act), RA 7076 (Small-scale Mining Act); PD 463, and all related laws that are oppressive to the people;

A moratorium on the issuance of large-scale mining permits, licenses, agreements and other instruments for one hundred years;

Rehabilitation, restoration of mining areas and accountability of mining corporations for the destruction that they caused;

Upholding workers' rights; and

Prohibiting state and privately sponsored armed groups from areas where there are current and prospective mining operations.

We believe that our individual commitments will grow into a voice of millions of Filipinos. It will be impossible not to heed our call.

This is our legacy to future generations.

Dapitan City, Philippines.


Carmelo M. Acuña
Fr. Susano O. Arbas
Atty Gerthie Mayo-Anda
Fr. Albert Anthony K. Bael
Bishop Warlito P. Baldomero
Edgar Canda
Lyda Jara Canson
Joji Cariño
Fr. Victor A. Fontejon
Carmencitia "Chin-Chin" A. Gutierrez
Atty. Marvic M.V.F. Leonen
Sr. Rosanne B. Mallilin
Bishop Jose R. Manguiran
Fr. Lauro C. Mozo
Director Antonio "Butch" D. Perez
Engr. Rolando A. Soliva
Teddy A. Casiño
Engr. Catalino L. Corpuz
Tesa C. de Vela
Maria Lourdes M. Tison
Alberto G. Valero
Cesar H. Villanueva
Bishop Zacarias Jimenez

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