Senator Francis “Kiko” Pangilinan has asked the Senate to investigate, in aid of legislation, the possible environmental and health hazards of the Manila Bay Nourishment Project.
“The town has a lot more money to spend, not the white beach project in Manila Bay. The COVID cases have already exceeded 380,000, many strong typhoons have passed, but they are still insisting that it is right. The question: Is it really necessary?” Pangilinan said.
The project, popularly known as the Manila Bay White Sand Beach, is worth P389 million.
In his Senate Resolution No. (SRN) 565, Pangilinan raises concerns of sustainability, legality, and possible environmental and public health hazards of the controversial Manila Bay project.
“This project is wasteful and unnecessary. Millions of funds should be used to supplement our pandemic health response, or for distance learning gadgets and materials of teachers and students. Cash aid for millions of Filipinos could also be used. who lost their jobs today in the pandemic,” Pangilinan said.
SRN 565 also calls on to investigate possible liability of erring government officials involved in the said project, with probable violations on the following laws:
- Local Government Code;
- Philippine Fisheries Code;
- Wildlife Conservation Act;
- Environmental Impact Assessment System;
- Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees; and / or
- Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
“The problem is not only in Manila Bay but also in the mining of dolomites in Alcoy, Cebu which may have been damaged by coral reefs and the loss of habitat of some endangered species. In short, it brought more problems than would have solved,” Pangilinan said.
“It’s a waste of money, it’s like drifting in the sea,” he said.