To please tourists, 300 island residents in Sorsogon City face eviction

BICOLTODAY.COM PHOTO

By BicolToday.com News Staff

SORSOGON CITY – “Pleasing the local and foreign tourists at the expense of driving out the homeless.”

This city’s tourism program is more on pleasing the tourists and “looking good” at the expense of causing misery and hardship unto its people.

More than 300 residents of Pinaculan Island, Barangay Bitan-o this city will be losing their homes after the city government has started clearing, excavating and constructing infrastructures in the area without consulting the affected inhabitants.

The city government of Sorsogon is planning to construct various recreation facilities in the area, but the residents have opposed the plan, wherein a number of residents will be affected, including their means of livelihood.

Resident’s source of livelihood in more on fishing and the city government did not offer any options to the affected families.

According to Pinaculan Anti-Demolition Alliance (PADA), 76 households or around 300 residents will be subjected to demolition.

Jaime Navajero, president of Pinaculan Anti-Demolition Alliance (PADA), is more than 70 years old and has resided in the island for 64 years.

He said, “we are fighting here in Pinaculan against demolition. The land should have been awarded to us, more than 76 families staying here. (pinaglalaban po namin dito sa Pinaculan na walang demolition, dapat nga ay ibigay na ito sa amin, mahigit 64 taon na akong naninirahan dito. Dapat e award na ito sa mga nakatira dito sa isla.)

Navajero lamented: “Suddenly, the city government is driving us away for the sake of tourism, This is inhuman, anti-people, that we are not consulted. The city government started cutting down the coconut trees, but we were fast enough to stop them. (Ngayon bigla na lang kaming papaalisin ng gobierno dito dahil lamang sa programang panturismo. Hindi makatao ang ginagawa nila. Hindi man lang kami kinunsulta. Bigla nilang pinutol ng niyog, mabuti na lamang ay maagap na pinatigil ng mga residente dito.“)

VIDEO FEATURE:

(68k people reached; 23k video views and 327 shares as of April 26, 2017 as posted in BicolToday.com @ Facebook)

Brusque and argumentative, city consultant Jovic Duran (political operator and consultant of Sorsogon City mayor Sally Lee) tries to out-talk Pinaculan Island residents and offers them PhP 3,000 each family to vacate the island. . .

According to affected residents, there is no clear city plan to where they will be relocated.

Several coconut trees had been cut for the tourism project of the city without giving any notice to the people who planted them.

According to island dwellers, several men of Duran have harassed them.

Livelihood of island dwellers have been affected and with the upcoming tourism project, all of them shall be affected.

Fishing is the source of livelihood for Pinaculan dwellers, their numbers have reached to 76 households or more than 300 residents who will be facing eviction soon without any security of permanent residency.

Until this time, the barricades set-up by residents are still in place until such time the city can present a clear and viable plan for the island and residents.

BICOLTODAY.COM PHOTO

BICOLTODAY.COM PHOTO

BICOLTODAY.COM PHOTO

Posted by on April 26, 2017. Filed under Bicol News,Headlines. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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