MAC/20: Mines and Communities

Rapu Rapu cyanide spill threatens to derail government promotion of mining

Published by MAC on 2005-11-30


Rapu Rapu cyanide spill threatens to derail government promotion of mining

30th November 2005

Even as Philip Romualdez, the President of the Philippines Chamber of Mines, was singing the praises of his government's pro-mining stance at the recent Mines and Money conference in London, that stance was under severe attack at home. The mayor of Rapu-Rapu island, supported by the province's league of mayors, is requesting the revoking of Lafayette's mining permit, following the cyanide leaks at its mine. The government has promoted this mine as a flag-ship project for a new 'responsible' mining industry, and as an editorial in the Manila Times reported this incident seems to be sparking "a resurgent grassroots opposition to the country's mining revival. It is the much-feared rude awakening that comes after a spiel of too-good-to-be-true promises of prosperity for all."

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