Datu Blah Sinsuat town turns over confiscated logs to DENR-ARMM
Cotabato City (Jan. 4, 2017) – A total of 4,125 board feet of illegally cut Lawaan logs were confiscated and turned over on Wednesday, Jan. 4, by the local government unit (LGU) of Datu Blah Sinsuat in Maguindanao to the Department of Environment and Natural Resources of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (DENR-ARMM).
Doming Dagadas, Maguindanao provincial environment and natural resources officer, said the illegally cut logs were loaded in a light vessel and were intercepted by teams from the Philippine Marines and the Philippine National Police at the town’s Barangay Pura, last December 23.
Marshall Sinsuat, Datu Blah Sinsuat mayor, said the local government is still investigating as to the origin of the illegally cut logs and the individuals behind the transport of these items.
Secretary Kahal Kedtag of the DENR-ARMM commended the local government unit for its effort in protecting the forest and the coastal areas in the municipality. “Mahigpit na ipinagbabawal ang pamumutol ng kahoy saARMM, we have total log ban, kaya nagpapasalamat tayo sa LGU ng Datu Blah Sinsuat for helping us, sana other municipalities will do the same,” Sec. Kedtag said.
“We will definitely strengthen our partnership with the LGUs in the ARMM this year to bust illegal logging activities in the region,” he added. On December 17, the department also seized 28,700 board feet of illegal logs in Maguing, Lanao del Sur and ordered the closure of three sawmills in the area.
The provincial government of Maguindanao recently issued an executive order creating the provincial Anti-Illegal Logging Task Force with the provincial governor as task force chairperson.
This is consistent with Executive Order (E.O.) No. 4 issued by Regional Governor Mujiv Hataman in 2012 that created the regional anti-illegal logging task force. This followed the issuance of Executive Order No. 1, or the Total Logging Ban in the ARMM, on December 29, 2011.
Since the implementation of E.O. No. 1, the total forest cover of the ARMM has increased by 6.8%, regional data showed. The coastal town of Datu Blah Sinsuat is a 10-year old municipality composed of 13 barangays that were formerly part of the municipality of Upi. (Bureau of Public Information)