Pandan Antique Philippines

Appeal to the Editors

Note: Email sent to several newspapers and organizations

January 12, 2001

Dear Editors:

Mr. Binay and Aventajado commited a crime against the Environmental Protection Agency and should be held responsible for the pollution of the Pacific ocean and the China Sea. Parking the barges of garbage at the shores of Semirara is a brazen act of disregard for human rights of the people of Antique and should be condemned!!

Since the issuance of the Temporary Restraining Order against the dumping on January 5, 2001, the stinking decomposing waste, germs and toxic chemicals in uncovered barges are leaking into the ocean and have become a health hazard as they slowly poison the fish, seashells, and all the marine life in the area.

It is very clear that Binay and Aventajado are only interested in the comfort of the people of Metro Manila who are their possible voters during the upcoming election. The blatant disregard of the written and vidoetaped protests of the Antiquenos and the false claims that Antique does not oppose the dumping are acts of agression against the people of Antique.

My name is Lourdes A. Burgos,MD, a Pediatrician from Paterson, New Jersey, USA. I was born and raised in Pandan Antique, a few miles away from Semirara island. I am also one of the founders of Pandan Antique Foundation (PAF), an organization of professionals from Pandan who are now scattered all over the world. Together with the PAGTATAP MANILA, and PAGTATAP USA, we are responsible for the legal maneuver to obtain a temporary restraining order to prevent the unloading of the garbage.

As a Physician,my main concern is the spread of E.Coli, Salmonella, Shigella, Streptoccocus, Pneumococcus, Staphylococus, Hepatitis A,B,C, Polio, Meningococus, Hemophilus Influenza, Ascaris, Pinworm, Viruses, Lead, Chromium, Cadmium, Mercury, just to name a few. In addition, the presence of these toxic substances in the ocean will cause metallic poisoning, cancer, malnutrition, starvation and death. Pregnant women who are exposed to these toxic substances will give birth to mentally retarded and physically deformed children.

Let it be known to Binay and Aventajado that we, the members of the Pandan Antique Foundation, shall never surrender our stance against MMDA’s garbage. We will not allow Mr. Binay’s and Aventajado’s corruption, cruelty and ignorance to trample over our innocent people. If we allow this horrible crime to take place, our environment will be completely destroyed by ruthless people like them. The destruction will also cause the annihilation of the area’s tourist industry, fishing industry and all food and income coming from the sea.

Contrary to what Binay and Aventejado are claiming, the people of Antique say, “NO GARBAGE DUMPING IN SEMIRARA ISLAND”. We will keep our vigil until the barges leave our shores. We shall never surrender.

Respectfully yours,

Lourdes A. Burgos, MD
New Jersey, USA