FULL TEXT: Chamber of Mines statement on new MPSA cancellations
Following Environment Secretary Gina Lopez’s announcement on the cancellation of 75 mineral production sharing agreements (MPSAs), the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines (COMP) issued a statement questioning the government’s responsibility to uphold contracts and follow due process.
Below is the copy of the COMP’s statement:
The recent announcement of Department of Environment and Natural Resources secretary-designate Regina Paz Lopez unilaterally cancelling the Mineral Production Sharing Agreements of 75 projects — most of which are yet to start development, and the Tampakan Environmental Compliance Certificate — is no longer a question of whether a handful of companies really violated environmental laws; it is no longer about Freedom of Information and whether we are going to be furnished a copy of the full audit results; nor about whether we are for open pit mining or not; or whether you are pro or anti-mining.
It has now become a question of whether we still uphold the sanctity of contracts.
It has now become a question of due process.
And of fairness and justice that applies to all.
We feel that the cancellation of these agreements does not rest on Ms. Lopez alone but must be collectively decided upon by the government as a whole considering the adverse impact it may have on the country.
More importantly, we feel that Ms. Lopez now has to answer to the Filipino people on all these that are fundamental in a society that follows the rule of law.
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