IPs to Receive Quarrying Royalties on Ancestral Lands for Iloilo Mega Dam
ILOILO CITY – Royalties will be paid to the Panay-Bukidnon (PA) indigenous peoples for sand and gravel obtained from their ancestral lands for the ongoing construction of a 13 billion peso mega dam project in Calinog, Iloilo.
The National Irrigation Administration (NIA) has announced that Panay-Bukidnon IPs will receive 5% of the base cost of raw materials used for the Jalaur River Multipurpose Project – Phase II (JRMP-II).
JRMP-II Project Manager Jonnel Borres and JRMP-II Legal Counsel Michael Margarico met with the Panay-Bukidnon Council of Elders earlier this week to discuss royalty payments.
Late last month, former Calinog Vice Mayor Renato Casinao, himself an IP, and Jimmy Lastrilla alleged that Korea-based Daewoo Engineering & Construction Co. Ltd. was illegally exploiting quarries in the ancestral domain.
Casinao and Lastrilla said the NIA, as the government agency implementing the pet project pushed by former senator Franklin Drilon, did not really act on their complaint.
The JRMP-II project management office stressed that Daewoo was not operating illegally.
“It is necessary to excavate these areas to allow the construction of dams and other facilities. The extracted raw materials, having been found to be of good quality, were processed by Daewoo and reused in the ongoing construction of the project,” the JRMP-II project management office said in a statement.
The JRMP-II is constructing three dams and reservoirs. It aims to irrigate 31,840 hectares of agricultural land and improve rice production in Iloilo as well as build a hydroelectric plant and provide drinking water.
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