Manila Bay reclamation disrupts fishers’ livelihood

Fishermen in Para?aque reported less catch due to the reclamation projects in Manila Bay.

“Wala man lang one-fourth[ang nahuli]. Tinambakan dyan eh. Ang daming barko. Nabubulabog,” a fisher said in Ian Cruz’s report on “24 Oras.”

(We barely caught fish. They started the reclamation project there. There are a lot of ships that cause disturbance.)

On Monday, President Ferdinand Marcos Jr. suspended all reclamation projects in Manila Bay, except for one. He made the remarks during his visit to Bulacan — one of the areas hard-hit by the recent floods spurred by the inclement weather.

“Nakasuspinde lahat. Under review ang lahat ng reclamation. ‘Yung isa lang ang natuloy dahil na-review na. Maraming problema, marami kaming nakitang hindi masyadong maganda ang patakbo,” Marcos Jr. said.

(We suspended the projects while we were reviewing them. There’s one exception. We see a lot of problems in the implementation.)

“Kung matuloy lahat ‘yan, maraming ilog ang mababara. ‘Yung Roxas wala na ‘yung dagat eh,” he added.

(If the projects will continue then a lot of rivers will be clogged. It seems like the sea is no longer there beside Roxas Boulevard.)

Some reclamation projects continued in Manila Bay but others were stopped including the one flagged by the US Embassy.

When asked for comment, the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) said it has yet to issue the suspension as it is still waiting for instructions from the Office of the President on what projects can continue.

“As soon as we receive, we will inform the LGUs [local government units] together with their joint-venture partners,” PRA assistant general manager Joseph Literal said.

The PRA also said the projects underwent a correct process and there are at least 13 projects whose applications were approved. Around seven are still pending.

“We required them to secure special permits. these special permits sir issued by Marina, Philippine Coast Guard and the National Security Council,” Literal added.–Sundy Locus/LDF, GMA Integrated News

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