‘We do our work right with high level of dedication and honesty’

By: Deniel Salvador B. Morillo


“There is no need to fear as long as we do our work right with high level of dedication and honesty.”

Director Carlito ‘Lito’ Merecido Tuballa, emphasized this during the Turnover Ceremony for his designation as the new OIC-Regional Director (RD) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) MIMAROPA Region, held last November 7, 2016 at the L & S Building, Ermita, Manila.

“We can see the deep insights from the heart of RD Oca. In fact, when I received my Special Order as Assistant Regional Director (ARD) for Technical Services of Region VIII, after being assigned in DENR Region IX for 38 years, I also cried.But I did not say anything; I just left my office, immediately packed my things, and reported to my new office,” RD Tuballa said as he empathized with the speech of the outgoing RD Oscar C. Dominguez.

The former Provincial Environment and Natural Resources (PENR) Officer of Zamboanga City also added that all government officials should be good soldiers, as he reminded everyone to never say no to the call of duty whenever they are given the chance to be promoted and be assigned to other places to serve.

“Just as what Nelson (Assistant Regional Director Nelson V. Gorospe) said, I started my government service in 1977 because right after I have completed my Forest Ranger Course, I was immediately employed to the (then) Forest Research Institute. So I started my career as a Research Aide,” he added as he recalled his humble beginnings.

The Outstanding Performance as Community Environment and Natural Resources (CENR) Officer for CY 1997 awardee also acknowledged the presence of the two Regional Directors of DENR MIMAROPA’s line bureaus, RD Ma. Socorro ‘Girlie’ Abu of the Environmental Management Bureau (EMB) and RD Roland de Jesus of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB).

“Now, we will be working with high level of collaboration- there is no longer the EMB nor the MGB but DENR. We are all one in DENR. That is the marching order of our top management. Also, we extend our gratitude first to the One above. And of course, to our beloved DENR Secretary Regina Paz Lopez. We also thank our DENR father, being the Field Operations Undersecretary as we are directly in line with field operations. Thank you Sir and please extend our gratitude to the Secretary,” said RD Lito as he thanked the Undersecretary for Field Operations Isabelo R. Montejo who witnessed the Ceremony.

In front of the DENR MIMAROPA Key Officials, CENR Officers, PENR Officers, and employees, the holder of diploma in Master in Public Administration reminded them to prepare their updates for him to see the accomplishments vis-à-vis targets for 2016 which will be discussed on the Regional Management Conference on November 8, 2016. He also highlighted that the work and financial plan for 2017 should be duly coordinated with Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) to encourage shared efforts between DENR and its stakeholders.

“I have said to myself, I was not promoted in terms of the item but I am promoted three times. First, I am promoted to work. Second, I am promoted to work harder. And third, I am promoted to work the hardest,” ended the new RD of DENR MIMAROPA.


DENR slaps criminal charge against Ipilan Nickel Corporation


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July 14, 2017. Puerto Princesa City. The Department of Environment and Natural Resources, through Brooke’s Point Community Environment and Natural Resources Officer Conrado Corpuz, files today at the Office of the Provincial Prosecutor a criminal charge against Ipilan Nickel Corporation for violation of Section 77 of Presidential Decree 705 or the Forestry Code of the Philippines.

The case filed by DENR involves a 1.7 hectare area out of the total 24-hectare forest cleared by Ipilan Nickel Corporation in Barangay Maasin, Brooke’s Point which DENR argues to be undoubtedly outside the company’s tree cutting permit.

DENR issued INC a special tree cutting permit in May 2016 as part of its Mineral Production Sharing Agreement (MPSA). However, former DENR Secretary Gina Lopez cancelled INC’s environmental compliance certificate (ECC) on December 16, 2016, rendering its tree cutting permit invalid. INC argues its tree cutting permit remains valid.

“Granting without admitting that INC’s tree cutting permit was valid, DENR has a strong case against the company on the 1.7-hectare cleared area,” asserts DENR MIMAROPA Regional Director Natividad Bernardino.

“This is just the first in a series of cases against INC,” says Corpuz. He said that DENR will also file other charges against INC upon completion of the inventory of the trees cut in the remaining 22.3 hectares. The onset of the rainy season and the huge number of felled trees has slowed down the retrieval and inventory of trees.

DENR is also investigating another violation – the construction of a mine yard road without clearance from DENR. Apart from this, Brooke’s Point Mayor Jean Feliciano is also batting to revoke the SEP (Strategic Environmental Plan) clearance issued by the Palawan Council for Sustainable Development to INC.

“INC is criminally liable and Secretary Roy Cimatu wants to ensure that irresponsible miners do not get around the law,” says Palawan Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Felizardo B. Cayatoc referring to the Secretary’s instruction to not let INC off the hook.Further, President Rodrigo R. Duterte announced on July 12, 2017 that mining companies must make up for the destructive impact of their operations on the livelihood of farmers and fishpond owners.

“With the string of cases facing INC, there is little chance it will be allowed to continue its mining operations,” adds Bernardino.

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