MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Church Group Demands The Provincial Government Stop Tvi Mining Operation

Published by MAC on 2006-05-24
Source: DCMI

Church Group Demands the Provincial Government Stop TVI Mining Operation

DCMI update

24th May 2006

Dipolog City, Zamboanga del Norte, Philippines – On 19th May the DIOPIM Committee on Mining Issues (DCMI), a regional church-based group, has called on the Provincial Governor Rolando Yebes to put a stop to TVI Pacific’s mining exploration in the town of Jose Dalman, because of lack of consent from local residents.

DCMI also asked the Governor to halt TVI’s open cut mining operation on the sacred ground of Mt. Canatuan, Siocon this province for the same problem. TVI has bought 486 hectares of a mining claim that was owned by the former Governor Roldan Dalman at Barangay Tamarok, in the town of Jose Dalman. The company’s website reported that it has paid to the former governor $US 5,000 as a signing bonus.

Julito Ango, a Barangay Councillor of Tamarok, said during the 19th May press conference that the mining operation, if ever finally permitted, would affect around 1,000, mostly Subanon, residents.

DCMI challenged the Governor, stating that “It’s time for Rolando Yebes to prove his slogan “Una sa tanan ang Katawhan” (first of all, the people). He must oppose and stop the exploration of TVI Resource Development Philippines in Barangay Tamarok and the full operation of the company in his province at Mt. Canatuan, Siocon”.

In a one page mining briefing distributed during the press conference, DCMI expressed support for the opposition to the operation by the people of Tamarok, and the Parish Pastoral Council (PPC) of Jose Dalman. On May 6, the PPC passed a resolution opposing the local mining activities of TVI.

Rev. Fr. Nemesio Sayon, the Parish Priest of St. Agustin in Jose Dalman, emotionally criticised the reported human rights violations, such as harassment and intimidations, employed by TVI against the Subanon communities.

Since 1997 several human rights violations by the company have been reported against the Subanon people in Mt. Canatuan, Siocon, and Subanon of Bayog, Zamboanga Del Sur.

DCMI predicts that the difficulties caused by TVI in the sacred ground of Mt. Canatuan is likely to reoccur in Jose Dalman and other parts of the Zamboanga Peninsula if TVI is permitted operate.

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