This unity statement was signed on April 19, at the Environmental Gathering Against The Return of the Marcoses to Malacanang held at Balay Kalinaw, University of the Philippines Diliman in Quezon City.
We, environmental advocates and organizations, unite against the return of the Marcoses to Malacañang. We are campaigning against the bid of Senator Bongbong Marcos to be the vice president in the coming May 2016 election.
During the martial law years (1972-1986), the dictator Ferdinand Marcos implemented policies and projects which wrought massive environmental pollution and destruction. The Revised Forestry Code of the Philippines, for instance, led to massive deforestation and commodification of our forest resources. From 1965 to 1986, seven million hectares of our forests were lost because of Marcos’ timber licensing agreements.
Despite strong opposition from communities, the Marcos government constructed the first dirty coal power plant in 1983, the Calaca Coal-Fired Plant in Batangas. Up to the present, locals continue to bear the brunt of the displacement and pollution caused by the power plant.
Marcos attempted to implement numerous corrupt-laden and extremely hazardous projects such as the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP), the Chico River Dam Project in Kalinga, and the Kaliwa-Kanan Dam in Rizal.
These attempts were derailed because of the strong people’s resistance. Environmental heroes and martyrs like Kalinga chieftain Macliing Dulag and Calaca fisherfolk leader Erning Castillano sacrificed their lives in the struggles against these destructive projects
The environmental crimes committed during the dictatorship are bound to happen again if Bongbong gets one step closer to Malacañang. Until now, Bongbong and the rest of the Marcoses have refused to admit or show remorse over their sins and crimes in the past.
Bongbong is linked to entities that have unscrupulous environmental records. Jose Singson Jr., one of the major donors of Marcos’ 2010 senatorial bid, is suspected of harbouring applications and ongoing operations of illegal and destructive magnetite mining operations in the Ilocos region. His relatives, the Romualdezes, are one of the biggest large-scale mining elites in the country. Sen. Marcos has promised to give more incentives to corporate mining once he takes on the vice presidency.
The gargantuan personal funding of Marcos is suspected to have been seeded by their $10-billion ill-gotten wealth, some of which are likely sourced from the various destructive mining and other extractive projects during the dictatorship.
Thus, the growing consensus across the Philippine environmental movement is that the unrepentant environmental criminals that are the Marcos dynasty should never again be allowed to return to power.
Protect our environment!
Oppose the return of Marcoses to Malacanang!
NO VOTE for Bongbong Marcos!
Envi Vote Alliance
Center for Environmental Concerns
Citizen Disaster Response Center