June 3, 2007
THE ILOCOS TIMES - NEWS

Post no bill on trees, please
Environmentalists find ally in Marcos II

AS THE Department of Environment and Natural Resources and the Green Ilocos Norte Network and Advocacy (GINNA) found an ally in Sangguniang Panlalawigan member Mariano V. Marcos II who said those who posted and nailed campaign paraphernalia on trees should contribute to a trust fund which would be used exclusively for tree-planting activities.

“Unang-una, dapat alam nila na hindi dapat magpako ng kahit ano sa puno. Ang ating ordinance—the word na ginamit is ‘place’. Sinasabi na kahit na pako man o lubid o kahit na anong baagay ay hindi dapat ilagay sa puno. Kaya nga nadismaya ako ‘nung nakaraang kampanya kasi talaga namang napakatigas ng ulo ng mga taong ‘to. Alam nilang may ordinansa tayo at sila’y tumatakbo either [for] law-making or executive position to implement the law,” Marcos II said.

The provincial legislator from Batac proposed that instead of demanding that these candidates to plant tree, each should contribute or donate even just a minimum amount to be put in a special trust fund which will be managed by a certain group for transparency’s sake to buy tree seedlings and require them to participate in tree-planting activities as a way of “making up” to what they did to trees during the recent election.

“Hindi naman siguro masakit ‘yun sa kanila kasi willing naman silang gumastos sa kampanya at willing naman silang mangampanya ng ganyang kasigasig, I’m sure they will be willing to share a little bit of their money and they will be willing to climb up the mountains to plant trees,” he said.

Upon consultation with the group, Marcos II pledged to sponsor an ordinance, or even just a resolution to urge government officials to support this move for the protection of the environment.

Meanwhile, GINNA said they plan to hold dialogues with local legislators and local chief executives in the province to request them to further integrate the “Sagip-Puno, Tanggal-Pako” project.

During the group’s nail-removal on trees project along the national highway in Badoc, Currimao, Pinili and Batac, a total of 4.6 kilograms of nails, with sizes ranging from 1-6 inches, were removed from trees. Also removed were tin caps, steel bars, wires, and GI strips.

Leilanie G. Adriano

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