Bicol LGUs warned on open dumpsites anew

Balatas open dumpsite
Photo by Oscar Esmenda/BICOL STANDARD

NAGA CITY 9/16/17 (Bicol Standard)--The Office of the Ombudsman is now focused on enforcing Republic Act 9003 or the Solid Waste Management Act in Camarines Sur.

This is according to Environmental Management Board (EMB) Provincial Officer Lilian Ornido.

Ornido said concerned citizens in the towns of Sagnay and Caramoan have filed complaints against local officials for operating open dumpsites.

At present, five towns and one city in Bicol have orders from the Office of the Ombudsman to cease operating open dumpsites.

These are the towns of Camalig, Daraga, Guinobatan, Polangui, Tiwi, and the City of Tabaco.

Of these, only two as of press time have complied with the closure order: Daraga and Polangui.

Based on Section 49 of Republic Act 9003, the penalty for towns and cities with open dump sites is P500,000.

Meantime, Ornido explained that Naga City has been given only until December 2017 to fully close the Balatas Open Dumpsite.

"If the city fails to make good on its promise, the National Solid Waste Management Commission will have no other choice but to penalize the elected officials for violating Section 9 of R.A. 9003," Ornido explained. (With report from Joe Caguimbal)