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  • Writer's pictureDianne Jayne Lumines

Congressman Mangaoang got approval on legitimation of ‘Minahang Bayan’ in Balbalan

Updated: Nov 25, 2020


Tabuk City, Kalinga―Congressman Allen Jesse Mangaoang was granted the approval for the segregation of the Gaang mines in Barangay Talalang from Balbalasang, Balbalan National Park in order for it to be legitimized as a ‘Minahang Bayan’ providing viable source of livelihood to the marginalized miners in the municipality.


Said House Bill 589 is entitled as Segregation of the Gaang mines in Talalang, Balbalan from the Balbalasang, Balbalan National Park in order for it to be legitimized as a ‘Minahang Bayan’.


In a Facebook live video, Congressman Allen Jesse Mangaoang narrated that as stated under the Republic Act 7076 otherwise known as People’s Small-Scale Mining Act of 1991, the ‘Minahang Bayan’ cannot be declared as people’s mining area due to its classification as a provincial development area and a national park being part of the Balbalasang, Balbalan National park.


With this, the bill which was approved shall extract 389 hectares of the particular Balbalasang, Balbalan National Park to be segregated as a ‘Minahang Bayan’.


“The conversion of all the classification of a piece of land amounting to 389 hectares which is… to Ga-ang… is a government initiative in order to sustain the livelihood and economic development of the area and at the same time prevent further degradation in the enforcement to protected landscape,” he stated.


It will also provide more opportunities for business and economic development and at the same time promote and encouraged responsible mining in the area.


Amendment of Republic Act 6463, Balbalasang, Balbalan National Park


Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Cordillera Administrative Region (DENR-CAR) Regional Executive Director Engr. Ralph Pablo supported the approval of the said bill and since the area is within the proclaimed tourism area at the same time it is within the Balbalasang National park, the only solution is to amend the existing proclamation into said segregation of the portion of land.


Meanwhile, Chief Norma Molinyawe of DENR-Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB), asked for the clarification on the title of the bill in which they would consider how they could separate the area of ‘Minahang Bayan’ from the location of Balbalasang, Balbalan National park based on their plotting of the areas. The result is the suggestion for its title editing.


It is further insisted that at present, this is classified as part of the tourism area, and that amendment of the Republic Act 6463 is needed which should be stressed in the provision that the portion of land is to be separated from the National Park.


Meantime, the committee approved the House Bill 589 and was considered that it has been duly responded without any objection. DENR-BMB is given a period of 10 days to submit its comment to the committee.


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