Bacolod City, Negros Occidental, Philippines Friday, February 28, 2014
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Structures being constructed at a 100 square-meter area allegedly bought by Murcia Mayor Andrew Montelibano.*
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Murcia mayor has land
in protected zone: TF

The campaign against the alleged illegal occupancy of the Northern Negros Natural Park in Salvador Benedicto, Negros Occidental, continues, with Murcia Mayor Andrew Montelibano identified by Task Force Ilahas, an environmental enforcement unit of the Provincial Environment and Management Office, among the alleged buyers of parcels of land within the protected park zone.

In its report to Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr., the TFI said that about eight hectares of forest land at Spur 20 in Brgy. Bunga, Don Salvador Benedicto, a former Integrated Social Forestry Area of Rex Javelosa and subjected to a reforestation by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, was allegedly sold to Montelibano, Gloria Isidito and a certain Modesta, in 2013.

Before it was allegedly sold to Montelibano it had already been bought by a certain Mrs. Yanson in 2011. TFI reports also showed.moremoremore

Certify Sugarcane Act bills

Senator Joseph Victor Ejercito yesterday said the proposed sugarcane act should be certified as urgent by the President for it to be become a law this year, before tariffs on imported sugar drop to a nominal 5 percent in 2015.

The senator, who was in Bacolod, said he will ask Rep. Alfredo Abelardo Benitez (Neg. Occ., 3rd District) to ask the President to certify it as urgent since he belongs to the administration party and has a better chance of getting a positive response.

Benitez authored the sugarcane act in the Lower House, while Ejercito filed a counterpart bill in the Senate, to help cushion the Philippine sugarcane industry from the effect of the drop of the tariffs on imported sugar, in compliance with the Asean Free Trade Area agreement.moremoremore

AFTA not a threat – Marañon

The Asean Free Trade Area agreement that will reduce the tariff on sugar imports entering the Philippines next year to a nominal 5 percent is not a threat, we should not be afraid of it, Negros Occidental Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr. said yesterday.

It should be seen as a blessing to make our producers more efficient so they can compete with the rest of the world, he said.

Sugar smuggling is a bigger threat, he said.

Competition brought about by the AFTA agreement will also give consumers access to better quality products, he said.moremoremore

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