53% or 95 local government units (LGU’s) around Manila Bay non-compliant with environment laws

53% or 95 local government units (LGU’s) around Manila Bay non-compliant with environment laws

53% or 95 local government units (LGU’s) of the total 178 LGU’s have failed to comply with environmental laws that led to the problems of Manila Bay.
56 LGUs broken down  comes from Central Luzon, 37 from Calabarzon (Cavite, Laguna, Batangas, Rizal and Quezon), and two from the National Capital Region.
The DILG identified these LGUs based on the 2018 Regional Inter-Agency Committee table assessments and on-site inspections.
Secretary Año of the Department of Interior and Local Government  (photo credit to owner) 
"There were decades worth of shortcomings that led to the problems of Manila Bay but we are not here to point fingers anymore. We, through the directive of the President, are here to bring back the Bay to its former glory and we need all LGUs to do their part," Año said in a statement.
16 of the 95 LGU’s have been categorized as having “worst problems” they will be given priority by the DILG in assistance.
"Based on our assessment, we still have a lot of work to do, and we intend to start with these 16 LGUs as we go along assisting all of 178. We will help them, hindi namin sila pababayaan (we will not leave them behind)," said Año.
 DILG can extend help to these LGUs by providing 
capacity development, workshops, coaching and mentoring and the like, in creating programs in line with environmental laws.
The DILG Secretary also warned the LGUs that will not cooperate with them in rehabilitating Manila Bay.
"We can also file cases against them with the Ombudsman or recommend disciplinary action to the President if warranted. So we challenge all LGUs to shape up. We need them to fight and win the Battle for Manila Bay," Año said.
Año said his department will continue to monitor the different LGUs to ensure compliance with environmental laws for the rehab and preservation of Manila Bay.
The LGU Compliance Assessment aims to assess LGU compliance with existing environmental laws and policies; identify necessary assistance needed by LGUs; and demand accountability from LGUs based on their actions/inactions based on their mandates.
The assistance of the DILG will depend on the assessment of the LGU. Año,  said the department can extend provision of capacity development, workshops, coaching and mentoring, among others to ensure that the LGUs are fully capable of exercising their mandates.
Apart from its current efforts to assist the LGUs, the DILG also devised a continuing plan to address LGU problem areas in Solid Waste Management; Liquid Waste Management; Informal Settlers Families (ISF); and Biodiversity Management.
Secretary Año is also looking at establishing the DILG Manila Bay Rehabilitation Task Force, which will be composed of task groups such as: Law Enforcement and Security Task Group; Barangay Clean-up and Enforcement Task Group; Informal Settler Families Relocation Task Group; LGU Supervision and Capacity Development Task Group; and Inspection and Permit Issuance Task Group.
The DILG Chief reminds the LGU’s to pass ordinances that will ensure that businesses without the Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) will not be allowed to operate.
“You have to be consistent na kapag walang (if there is no) ECC, hindi na makakatuloy ang business (you have to suspend business operations). And if there are violations, make them pay the fine,” he said.

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Report from PNA

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