Oral arguments held today on ‘kalikasan’ petition | Malaya Business Insight

Hachero, A. (2019, July 02). Oral arguments held today on ‘kalikasan’ petition. Malaya Business Insight. Retrieved July 02, 2019 from https://www.malaya.com.ph/business-news/news/oral-arguments-held-today-%E2%80%98kalikasan%E2%80%99-petition

Oral arguments held today on ‘kalikasan’ petition
By ASHZEL HACHERO – July 02, 2019

THE Supreme Court is set to hold oral arguments today on petition filed by fisherfolk from Palawan and Zambales seeking to compel government to protect and save the environment in the West Philippine Sea from foreign poachers, mostly Chinese, and from construction and reclamation activities in the area.

The petition for the issuance of a writ of kalikasan filed by a group led by Monico Abogado and assisted by the Integrated Bar of the Philippines was originally scheduled to be heard last June 25 but the court en banc decided to move the oral argument today to give the petitioners and respondents time to prepare.

The court on May 3 ordered the government to answer the petition.

A writ of kalikasan is a legal remedy that provides for the protection of one’s right to “a balanced and healthful ecology in accord with the rhythm and harmony of nature” as provided for in Section 16, Article II of the Constitution.

The petitioners said there is a need for the High Court to act on violations of Philippine environmental laws in Philippine waters and in the country’s exclusive economic zone (EEZ).

They said foreign poachers have been harvesting vulnerable, threatened, and endangered marine life such as corals, giant clams, and turtles through the use of cyanide and dynamite, and other illegal methods.

They said this is based on evidence submitted by government before the Netherlands-based Permanent Court of Arbitration in 2013 challenging China’s massive claims in the South China Sea, part of which is the West Philippine Sea.

Also based on the evidence, foreign construction and land reclamation entities have caused massive environmental damage in Philippine waters and its EEZ, they said.

The petitioners said the extent of the environmental damage at the Panatag and Ayungin Shoals and Panganiban Reef — the main focus of their

Petition — is documented in reports of government agencies including the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.

They said the respondents have “refused or failed to take the necessary legal actions” as mandated by Philippine laws such as Republic Act 8550 or the Philippine Fisheries Code to “stop, prevent and prosecute the perpetrators of these illegal acts.”

The respondents are Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Piñol, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra, Navy chief Vice Adm. Robert Empedrad, Coast Guard Commandant Elson Hermogino, PNP chief Gen. Oscar Albayalde, PNP-Maritime Group Director Rodelio Jocson, and Eduardo Gongona, director of the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources.

Category: National | Malaya Business Insight

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

  • Welcome to Legislative Library Service Online!

    Welcome! This is the current information service provided by the House of Representatives Legislative Library which started in the 15th Congress. This blog provides information about the Library, its collection, online clippings of national issues related to or about the House of Representatives, the different House Members, Philippine legislative history, legislation, bill drafting, laws, and other articles pertaining to Congress and to the creation of laws.
%d bloggers like this: