Four of President Duterte’s Cabinet secretaries are set to discuss environmental issues in Bohol particularly in the resort town of Panglao during their visit to the province for the inauguration of the New Bohol Panglao International Airport on November 27.
According to newly appointed Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Charlie Fabre, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Sec. Roy Cimatu, Department of Tourism Sec. Bernadette Romulo Puyat, Department of Interior and Local Government Sec. Eduardo Año and Socioeconomic Planning Secretary Ernesto Pernia will be meeting local environment authorities and government officials including Governor Edgar Chatto.
The officials will be discussing issues including Panglao’s easement rule and the town’s water quality, Fabre said.
“We will be having a meeting to discuss how to proceed sa instruction sa atoang Presidente to make sure that there will be no violators along tourist destinations sa Pilipinas,” he added.
The two mayors of Panglao Island, Dauis Mayor Miriam Sumaylo and Panglao Mayor Leonila Montero, together with the four agencies’ provincial directors are also expected to join the meeting.
In March, Cimatu conducted an hour-long inspection of beachfront resorts along the almost kilometer-long Alona shoreline in Panglao to check their compliance with environmental laws.
Although he said that the resorts did not appear to be violating the Clean Water Act, he noted that many of the establishments have structures which encroached on the easement zone.
A total of 87 resorts were deemed by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources as among violators of the 20-meter easement rule based on a list issued by the agency.
Cimatu then gave owners of the illegal structures six months to demolish these or charges would be filed against them.
However, establishments remained within Panglao’s easement zone even after the deadline. (AD)