𝐊𝐎𝐑𝐎𝐍𝐀𝐃𝐀𝐋 𝐂𝐈𝐓𝐘, 𝐒𝐨𝐮𝐭𝐡 𝐂𝐨𝐭𝐚𝐛𝐚𝐭𝐨 - A total of 67 sacks of non-biodegradable and biodegradable materials were collected during the clean-up drive activity initiated by the DENR XII - Field Offices in celebration of this year’s International Day of Action for Rivers (March 14).
Community Environment and Natural Resources Offices (CENROs) - General Santos City and Banga, conducted their clean-up activities at Purok Matinabangon, Barangay Labangal, General Santos City, and the Riverbanks of Brgy. Reyes, Banga, South Cotabato, respectively.
CENR Officer Elmer S. Mercado underscored the significance of taking action toward river protection. “We need to protect our rivers because it plays a vital part in the water cycling system. For humans to sustainably inherit the earth, we need to protect our environment and natural resources. ‘We also need to intensify awareness on the importance of rivers for the society and its economy,” he said.
Their activity was then followed by a tree growing along the banks of the Silway River. Provincial ENRO Sultan Kudarat and CENRO Tacurong likewise collected trash from Kalawag Creek, Isulan, Sultan Kudarat together with the residents and interns of Sultan Kudarat State University. This was followed by an information education and communication (IEC) campaign given by Forester Sittie Hafsa D. Dimatingcal, EnP.
The PENRO South Cotabato through the Protected Area Management Office-Allah Valley Protected Landscape (AVPL) joined the celebration through a tree growing and clean-up activity at Barangay Lamlahak, Lake Sebu, South Cotabato wherein 150 red lauan seedlings were planted with the National Irrigation Authority, PEMO South Cotabato and MLGU Lake Sebu.
Meanwhile, CENRO Midsayap in collaboration with the Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office (MENRO) of Libungan Municipality conducted a River Walk and clean-up activities along the portion of the Libungan River. Forester Calil A. Bantuas, Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer (CENRO) of Midsayap stressed that working together for the benefit of the environment is of big importance. “It is necessary that people and the government come together to clean rivers. With this and other related activities, we generate awareness and make people part of the solution”, he said.
Aside from the river clean-up, said offices also conducted IEC campaigns tackling the 26th anniversary of the celebration including the Republic Act 9003 or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act of 2000. Students from Hinalaan Integrated School Kalamansig, Sultan Kudarat were likewise oriented on the Philippine Clean Water act in an IEC spearheaded by CENRO Kalamansig, flyers on these topics as well as Gender and Development (GAD) were then distributed to the participants.
On the other hand, CENRO Matalam installed 3 billboards along the Nuangan River with a slogan that reads “Ang ilog ay Buhay, wag po nating gawing basurahan” to remind constituents to mind their wastes and not throw it in rivers. PENRO Cotabato correspondingly did a tree planting activity together with its 80 participants along the creek of Mook River, Sitio Umpan, Barangay Balabag, Kidapawan City.
Shirley P. Uy, technical service division (TSD) chief of PENRO Cotabato gave a brief historical overview of the river saying that “The river streams down from Paniki Falls, which feeds Mook Creek and winds through Umpan Village in Sitio Mook, Barangay Balabag, forming the core of the Paniki Falls Eco-River Park. ‘The body of water is also casually referred to by the native Obo Monuvu as 'Linow't Ansoy' (Ansoy's waters), in reference to a semi-legendary female hunter who once frequented the area. Aside from Ansoy, it was also the hunting ground of Datu Abon Umpan” she said.
A total of 900 Shorea almond seedlings were planted in the area after the short program.
International Rivers Association describes the International Day of Action for Rivers as a day dedicated to solidarity- when diverse communities throughout the world come together with one voice to proclaim the rivers matter and raise awareness about pollution, river management, and fair access to clean, flowing water. (With reports and Photos from PENRO SK, PENRO Cotabato,PENRO South Cotabato, CENRO Tacurong, CENRO Banga, CENRO Gensan, CENRO Matalam, CENRO Kalamansig and CENRO Midsayap) |RSCIGP