Pandan Antique Philippines

Appeal to the Newspaper Editors and Greenpeace

Note: Addressed to Greenpeace Southeast Asia and to the Editors of Philippine Daily Inquirer, Philippine Star and

December 23, 2000

Dear Editor:

I am a member of Pagtatap-USA (meaning to care) and Pandan Antique Foundation, Inc. based in the United States of America. I am from the town of Pandan in Pandan Bay which is just a few kilometers away from Semirara Island.

Our organization, whose most families are still in Pandan, Antique, strongly opposes Mr. Aventajado and J. Binay of making one of our beautiful island Semirara(a wildlife sanctuary for sea turtles, rare birds, white sand and rich fishing ground) in Antique as Metro Manila’s garbage dumpsite which will commence on December 29,2000. That is the day our beautiful island will die. Fishing which is the main livelihood in the islands will die, too. For those of you who have not seen Semirara and the surrounding islands, ride a plane and see it from the window of your plane, it is like paradise. White sand. Clear pristine water. It is like forever.

All of these God given gift to us will be destroyed by Mr. Aventajado and J.Binay’s political agenda, because to them, it is more important to please Metro Manila voters. Metro Manila garbage will be an issue this coming election 2001. And population wise, the number of votes coming from Metro Manila is significant in comparison to the votes from the islands that will be affected by the Semirara dumpsite. Make Metro Manila a political stronghold is their strategy, sacrifice the votes coming from Antique, Aklan, Mindoro and Romblon, let the people there rot and die with Metro Manila’s garbage.

Mr. Aventajado and J. Binay know that the people of Antique opposes their plan through a public hearing conducted last December 15, 2000; letters, e-mails, publications, commentaries sent to them, but still they will proceed on making Semirara a dumpsite on December 29,2000. We, the people of Antique, simply do not matter. No amount of pleadings will change the minds of Mr. Aventajado and J. Binay. We do not know what to do. Public Opinion? But is there such a thing as public opinon nowadays?

And to the people of Metro Manila, can you sleep at night knowing that your garbage is being dump on our backyard and on our dining table in Antique, Mindoro, Romblon and Aklan? Remember we get our food from the sea. If you do, then you Metro Manilan’s have lost that beautiful Filipino trait of caring.

And for those who care, please help us.

Thank you for allowing our sentiments to be read.


California, USA