Another 18,000-hectare reclamation in Manila Bay hit
Manila, Philippines – The militant fisherfolk group Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (PAMALAKAYA-Pilipinas) assails the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) for its biggest reclamation project in Manila Bay as what the group claimed would result to environmental and socio-economic disaster.
During an interagency dialogue on reclamation projects held in Quezon City last May 22, PAMALAKAYA learned that the PRA will reclaim another 18,000 hectares of Manila Bay on top of the existing 29, 929.56 hectares under the National Reclamation Plan (NRP).
PRA Department Manager Eduardo Destura presented 15 reclamation projects in the northern and eastern Part of Manila Bay, including the new Manila Bay Integrated Flood Control, Coastal Defense and Expressway Dike Project, the biggest project covering 18, 000 hectares and costs P399.66-billion. The said project is an integrated project in the northern coastline of Manila Bay from Malabon City to the Province of Bataan.
“It seems the almost 30, 000-hectare existing reclamation in Manila Bay is not enough; they approved another 18, 000 hectares to pursue their dream of building castles out of the productive fishing grounds and tranquil communities of hundreds of thousands of fisherfolk and coastal settlers,” Fernando Hicap, PAMALAKAYA Chairperson said in a statement.
The fisherfolk group dismissed the claim of the PRA that they already halted the National Reclamation Plan (NRP) when the projects that they presented during the dialogue are those under the NRP.
“Massive reclamation activities in Manila Bay continue. In Navotas City, the local government is pushing through with the construction of the seawall in preparation to the reclamation project for commercial and mixed use in the city. While in Bacoor Cavite, coastlines are being surveyed as a prelude to construct commercial and business district on top of the waters,” added Hicap.
“There is no such thing as success stories in past reclamations; either it demolished productive fishing communities, wiped out an entire fishing population, or destroyed marine ecosystem and resources. We vow to oppose reclamation projects and all destructive projects in our fishing waters at all cost,” ended Hicap. ###