Almost two months in the “barikada kontra mina”, local residents and environmental defenders stood firmly on their ground to fight the destructive mining activity in the island of Sibuyan. Altai Philippines Mining Corporation (APMC), through their employees, filed multiple trumped charges against at least 11 environmental defenders and received corresponding subpoenas dated March 15, 2023.
Stories of harassment became an everyday challenge to them since the barricade was formed – the past week was no exception. APMC employees (three truck drivers and one Human Resource Officer) filed cases to nine (9) local residents of San Fernando, Romblon for grave coercion and to five (5) local residents of the same municipality for robbery, slight physical injury, and grave oral defamation. The subpoena was received last March 23, 2023.
Living Laudato Si’ Philippines condemns this malicious act from persons affiliated with Altai Philippines Mining Corporation (APMC). There is a clear intent to intimidate and threaten Sibuyanons who fight for their right to a clean, healthy, and sustainable environment – the people’s struggle to protect their valuable natural resources from harmful mining activities.
“In the present condition of global society, where injustices abound and growing numbers of people are deprived of basic human rights and considered expendable, the principle of the common good immediately becomes, logically and inevitably, a summons to solidarity and a preferential option for the poorest of our brothers and sisters.” (Laudato Si’ par. 158)
With unwavering faith, we intensify our calls for the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) to revoke the Mineral Production Sharing Agreement (MPSA) of Altai Philippines. Stop mining in Sibuyan, ban open pit mining in the Philippines!
THE PEOPLE UNITED WILL NEVER BE DEFEATED.