By NITZ ARANCON
MISAMIS Oriental 2nd Rep. Juliette Uy yesterday sought the suspension of Phividec Industrial Estate administrator Franklin Quijano and another official as she blamed them for the controversial shipments of garbage from South Korea to the province last year.
Uy pointed to Quijano, a former mayor of Iligan City, and Phividec port management division head Efledo Resma as the officials responsible for the entry of thousands of tons of garbage from South Korea, during the joint public hearing of the House committees on good governance, public accountability, and ecology at Marco Hotel in Cugman yesterday. It was the second day of the congressmen’s fact-finding work here.
Uy called for the suspension of Quijano and Resma after Reymart Santos, resident manager of the Philippine Sinter Corp. (PSC), told the congressmen that the reason why one of the controversial shipments was moved from the PSC port in Villanueva to the VNS Verde Soko Philippines Industrial Corp. plant at the Phividec Industrial Estate in neighboring Tagoloan town was because Verde Soko was given the green light by Phividec.
Uy said some five thousand metric tons of garbage from South Korea were offloaded from MV Affluent Ocean at the PSC port on July 21, 2018 and found its way to the Verde Soko plant in Sitio Bugwak, Barangay Sta. Cruz, Tagoloan last year.
The congressmen inspected the PSC port and then proceeded to the plastic recycling plant of Verde Soko where, Uy said, they saw tons of garbage.
Uy questioned the legitimacy of the recycling plant, noting that she saw rusty structures, and some were even made of bamboo.
“Sus, ingon ani ba gud ang hitsuta sa ilang planta! Ma-o na nga klaro kaayo nga dili plastic materials for recycling ang gi-import sa Verde Soko kon dili mga basura gyud,” she said.
Uy added: “Dili ko mohunong ani hangtud nga walay ma-priso kay dili man ni makasulod dinhi sa ato kon walay conspiracy niini sa mga official sa gobyerno.”
Uy said she would have asked the police to arrest the “Koreans” if the garbage was dumped in Villanueva, her hometown and her family’s political bailiwick.
“Kitang mga Pinoy tinontohan lang ta nila sa mga Koryano,” she said.
The House committees did not act on Uy’s proposal, saying they have not yet concluded the investigation.
“We will seriously consider the call of Congresswoman Uy for possible inclusion in our committee reports,” said Misamis Occidental Rep. Henry Oaminal who presided over the joint public hearing of the House committees.
Oaminal said the committee reports on the controversial shipments would soon be drafted.
The official reports, he said, would identify exactly who the committees think should be held liable in the Phividec, Bureau of Customs, Environmental Management Bureau, and other government offices.
He said the committee reports would be the bases for lawsuits and for any suspension order.
Oaminal also said the committees might include executives of PSC and even the Bagong Buhay Arrastre Services Inc. (BBASI).
“Ang Phividec ma-oy naghatag panogot nga makagawas sa pantalan sa Philippine Sinter ang maong mga basura gikan sa barko. Ang BBASI ma-oy nag-diskarga kay arrastre man sila. Basta kay na-ay gyud manubag nila,” Oaminal said.