IT IS with shock and deep regret that this writer received the news about the rejection of the confirmation of DENR Secretary Gina Lopez by the Commission on Appointments. During her 10-month stint as Secretary, she has exhibited a genuine sense of public service and a truly admirable and passionate interest in addressing environmental issues without concern for any selfish gains in return, even willingly facing the flak of those who have strongly opposed her program of action specifically where it concerns the mining industry. She is by far the only DENR Secretary who has drawn our attention to communities being affected by mining explorations and who has carried a clear advocacy for responsible mining. This rejection is obviously in favor of the mining companies but a great disservice and loss to the Filipino nation. Parenthetically, I would like to commend the eight senators who voted for her confirmation, to wit: Sen. Bam Aquino, Sen. Francis Pangilinan, Sen. Franklin Drilon, Sen. JV Ejercito, Sen. Loren
Legarda, Sen Ralph Recto and, miracle of miracles - Sen. Manny Pacquiao and Sen. Vicente Sotto.
On the part of the Secretary, she reportedly expressed that many mining companies were not ready of her tough approach against open pit mining and environmental plunder, and that the vote against her by majority of the lawmakers sends a message that our government is powerless in controlling these mining firms. Environmental groups, on the other hand, strongly condemned the CA decision saying that the lawmakers who voted against her confirmation have betrayed the people. True indeed!
Congratulations to AdeNU high school batch ‘57 which is celebrating their 40th anniversary since graduation from high school. They are now occupied in their preparation for their Golden Anniversary according to Associate Justice Mon Cruz of the Court of Appeals. Naga City’s RTC Clerk of Court Atty. Igmidio Blacer is also a member of batch ‘57.
I and my spouse Minda express our deep and sincere condolenceS to the bereaved family of the late RTC Judge Bernhard B. Beltran, presiding judge of RTC branch 61 here in Naga who recently passed away at age 50. His body now lies in state at the St. Peter Funeral Home and interment is scheduled on May 4 at the Eternal Gardens after a 1:00 pm mass at the Basilica Minore.
We likewise extend our condolences to the family of Sir Knight Philip A. Pua, a 4th Degree member of the Knights of Columbus, Mons Jorge Barlin Assembly who also recently passed away.
QUOTATION OF THE WEEK:
“YOU WILL NEVER DO ANYTHING IN THIS WORLD WITHOUT COURAGE. IT IS THE GREATEST QUALITY OF MIND NEXT TO HONOR.”
FOR OUR WORD OF LIFE:
‘”BE STRONG AND COURAGEOUS FOR THE LORD YOUR GOD GOES WITH YOU.”