Cancel OceanaGold's Mining Contract NOW
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CANCEL OCEANAGOLD'S MINING CONTRACT NOW
Respect the people’s will! Stop illegal operations in Didipio mines!
Environmental and human rights groups in the Philippines support the resistance led by the Didipio Earth Savers Movement (DESAMA) and Didipio-Watch against destructive and irresponsible mining in Nueva Vizcaya.
Last 21 June 2019, farmers and indigenous peoples from the village of Didipio, in Kasibu town, Nueva Vizcaya set-up a peoples barricade to prevent the illegal operations of Didipio mines, owned by OceanaGold Philippines, Inc. (OGPI). OGPI’s mining contract (Financial and Technical Assistance Agreement # 1) expired last June 20, 2019, and failed to secure a renewal of this agreement.
We demand the following, in support to the struggle being led by DESAMA, Didipio-Watch and other local organizations in Didipio, Kasibu, Nueva Vizcaya:
1. Pres. Rodrigo Duterte must immediately cancel OGPI’s contract and order the stop of illegal mining operations of OGPI. Since its mining contract has expired and has failed to secure a renewal, OGPI has no right to continue posing a threat to the forests and water resources in Nueva VIzcaya.
2. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) must immediately revoke its favorable endorsement for the application of FTAA renewal. DENR has failed to ensure that precautionary principles are enforced in the review and assessment of the mining contract, and has merely relied on technical compliance of OGPI in submitting its application for renewal.
3. The national government must respect and recognize the autonomy of local governments affected by mining operations of OGPI. All three local governments impacted by OGPI’s operations have expressed their opposition, and this is a truthful reflection of the will of the people.
4. The National Commission on Indigenous Peoples (NCIP) should comprehensively conduct in a transparent, inclusive and participative manner all consultations, field based investigations and negotiations for the free, prior and informed consent (FPIC) of all indigenous peoples in the affected areas, including migrant IPs who have settled and lived in area for more than four decades.
5. The DENR must demand a new and updated Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) from OGPI and issue a new Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) as part of the requirement for the renewal of the FTAA.
For genuine freedoms,
Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM)
Philippine Misereor Partneship, Inc. (PMPI)
Fr. Edwin Gariguez
National Secretariat for Social Action (NASSA)
Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center (LRC-KsK/FOE-Phils)
Bantay-Kita Publish What You Pay – Philippines (BK/PWYP-Phils)
LILAK-Purple Action for Indigenous Women
Focus on the Global South - Philippines
Non-Timber Forest Product Exchange
Program – Philippines (NTFPEP-Phils)
With the assumption of newly-elected officials last 1 July 2019, the local governments of Barangay Didipio, the Municipal government of Kasibu and the Provincial government of Nueva Vizcaya have expressed their opposition against the continued operations of OGPI. A dialogue with DENR officials have resulted in nothing, except with the unbelievable news that the environment department has endorsed favorably to the Office of the President the renewal of FTAA # 1, without the knowledge and consent of mining-affected communities and the concerned local governments.
The Didipio mines was ordered suspended last February 2017 by former DENR Sec. Gina Lopez, after numerous complaints about water and unsettled land claims. In October 2018, a research published by international experts from Washington DC and Canada summarized OGPI’s violations against environmental laws and regulations and its non-compliance to contractual obligations.
You can read here the petition submitted by Didipio-Watch to the Office of the President last 13 March 2019, citing the evidences on why the mining contract should not be renewed.
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