DENR donates 500 desks to San Juan, Batangas in time for the school opening

DENR donates 500 desks to San Juan, Batangas in time for the school opening

MOA Signing San Juan Mayor Manalo on donated wood B

                Department of Environment and Natural Resources Region 4A CALABARZON Regional Director Reynulfo A. Juan (right) shakes hands with San Juan (Batangas) Mayor Rodolfo Manalo (left) after signing the Deed of Donation for the 500 school desks for public schools in San Juan in simple rites held at the Sequoia Hotel in Quezon City on May 25, 2016. Also present were: (from left) Los Banos Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer (CENRO) Emiliano Leviste, San Juan LGU Municipal ENR Officer Noelito M, Pasco, Laguna Provincial ENR Officer (PENRO) Eleazar Alaira, Batangas PENRO Jose Elmer Bascos and Rizal PENRO Isidro Mercado.

                Juan said the 500 desks were manufactured by the Provincial and Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices in Laguna by using a special equipment to process some 15,000 board feet of 'confiscated lumber.' He said, "The donation is in line with DENR Secretary Ramon JP Paje's directive to utilize 'available confiscated timber without claimants and court cases' to be manufactured into school desks for distribution to recipient schools as identified by the Department of Education in the municipality."

                He added that the effort to prioritize the DepEd and other government agencies in the use of confiscated lumber is also following Presidential Executive Order No. 23.

 

 

                Laguna PENR Officer Eleazar Alaira narrated that wood were quality-processed, milled with the use of a Wood Mizer Mobile Sawmill secured from the Forest Products Research and Development Institute of the Department of Science and Technology (FPRDI-DOST). He said the state-of-the-art equipment was installed at the regional impounding area at the DPWH Compound in Brgy. Bambang, Los Banos, Laguna.

                Alaira said "The chairs will be picked up by LGU-San Juan, any time from now. Target (of hauling) is before the school opens so that the students will have chairs to use when they report for classes."

                San Juan Mayor Manalo appreciated the DENR for the chairs and for Undersecretary Ernesto Adobo's help in the fruition of the donation. He said. "The donation of the chairs is right on time. This will help us and the DepEd. They are intended for use of the incoming senior high school students (Grade 11-12 of the K-12 educational schedule)."

                In response to the goodwill, Manalo revealed that San Juan has been supporting the DENR in its efforts to preserve the environment. He said students are required to plant trees before they graduate, couples, likewise, plant trees before they are wed. "We also regulated the use of plastics in our town, plastic garbage cause damage to the uplands, to our seas. San Juan is blessed with the mountains (kabundukan), lowland (kapatagan) and beautiful coastal areas and seas (karagatan), these we have to protect. Our town is an ecotourism destination. We have maintained ourcmangrove area, the biggest (in area) probably in Batangas. (siguro ito ang pinakamalapad sa buong Batangas)," he said.

                Juan reassured Manalo of the support and collaboration with the municipality particularly in its natural resources protection and conservation efforts.

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Among the participants are representatives of PKMM (Pambansang Katipunan ng Makabayang Magbubukid), a people’s organization composed of local farmers and fishers from Barangay Dinahican, Infanta, Quezon, who aired their concern on the confiscation of wood allegedly illegally sourced from Palanan, Isabela. They said they were supposed to use the wood for repairing their wrecked boats.
“Paano ang aming hanapbuhay?” one of the members said, expressing his worry that they might not be able to continue fishing, hence, could no longer provide for their families.

Regional Director Reynulfo Juan said that he is all for supporting livelihood. Understanding their plight, he provided them with possible solutions to help their situation: “Pwede akong gumawa ng endorsement letter sa BFAR (Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources), may binibigay silang libre[ng bangka], o kaya pwede namin kayo matulungan sa paghahanap ng makukuhanan ng kahoy”, he stated.

He asked them to specify the kinds of wood they need to repair their boats so that the Office could assist them in looking for legal sources. He also assured them that it will be verified whether or not the apprehension was conducted properly.

Another concern of the group was a problem regarding the rightful owner of the land they are residing in. Accordingly, there are two groups claiming the land: the Magallanes and the Maharlikans. The complaining party conveyed that they are confused as to whom they should pay their dues, as the Magallanes drives them away every time they cannot pay them.

“Magko-conduct tayo ng investigation. Kailangang malaman kung ano ang land classification, sino ang occupant, at sino ang claimant” Juan said. He also asked the residents to be present during the investigation.

On the other hand, some residents of Barangay Tunha, Famy, Laguna relayed their petition to cancel the survey plan of a certain Mr. Sotalbo, who was given survey authority despite him not having a land title. The residents are now facing the threat of possibly losing their homes to demolition. At present, the case has been brought to the court.

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