The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) issued a show cause order to Santarli (STL) Panay Resources Company Limited requiring it to give details why it started the Aklan river dredging operation without the necessary permits.
STL has 72 hours or three days upon receiving the order to explain also why no legal action will be imposed against the company.
Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer (PENRO) Ivene Reyes also issued a cease and desist order on January 26 to STL managing director Patrick Lim for its alleged Aklan River dredging violations.
The agency noted “the company’s vessel named MV Zhong Hai 18 used for dredging operations docked near the mouth of Aklan River was found that out of six compartments, two (compartments no. 3 and 4) were filled with estimated volume of 1,200 cubic meters of sand sediments.”
Reyes said PENRO-Aklan has not permitted STL to start dredging operations in the Aklan River dredging project.
“You (STL) are directed to stop any dredging operations in the area pending compliance of all government requirements,” he added in a separate cease and desist order.
The two orders were based on the joint multi-sectoral monitoring and validation on January 23, 2017 by DENR and PENRO-Aklan to verify if STL started the dredging operation and if soil erosion was caused by the dredging.
Last Thursday, some 100 residents of the island barangay of Bakhaw Norte in Kalibo marched to the streets and rally outside the offices of DENR, Department of Public Works and Highways and the provincial governor to intervene on STL’s violations on Aklan River dredging operations.
Maribeth Cual, village chief of Bakhaw Norte, alleged that STL is not only dredging but also involved in ‘mining operation’ in Aklan River.
BY BOY RYAN B. ZABAL