Group says Aquino’s EO on mining may result massive dislocation

THE militant peasant group Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) today warned that President Aquino’s so-called new mining executive order (EO) would result to intensified displacements of farmers and indigenous peoples in the countryside.

The KMP described the reported exemption of prime agricultural lands in the new mining EO as a “farce” pointing out that “the Mining Act of 1995 remains as the backbone of the new EO.”

“The notorious and anti-peasant Mining Act of 1995 is the main culprit in the wide-scale landgrabbing, displacement of farmers, and environmental havoc in the countryside. As long as the anti-farmer Mining Act of 1995 exists, Aquino’s mining EO is nothing but hot air,” says KMP spokesperson Antonio Flores.

The KMP leader also assailed the reported Palace-created Council under the EO that “shall undertake an extensive review of all existing mining contracts and agreements to ensure that they are in line with the new mining policies of the government, and are not contrary to existing laws, rules, and regulations. Provided, however that the review shall not result in the impairment of contracts.”

“Obviously, the draft EO is merely designed to weaken local ordinances against large-scale mining,” Flores said.

“Aquino’s new EO on mining would worsen the massive land-grabbing, destruction, and plunder of large-scale mining TNCs of our natural resources,” the peasant leader said.

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