BY ROGER M. BALANZA
`The communist New People’s Army (NPA), the armed wing of the leftist National Democratic Front (NDF), the umbrella of communist organizations in the country, has a strong presence in the two upland, mountainous districts. In earlier statements, the NDF warned it would oppose any mining activity in the said districts, especially in Paquibato where the NPA’s First Pulang Bagani Command headed by rebel leader Leoncio “Parago” Pitao is holed up.
During her term, former Mayor Sara Duterte said she would not issue any permit for mining. The position was also strongly supported by then Vice Mayor Rodrigo Duterte, her father, who is now the sitting mayor.
To give more teeth to the policy, the Davao City Council passed a resolution declaring Davao City as ‘mining free,” which was also echoed in a resolution at the House of Representatives authored by 3rd District Rep. Isidro Ungab.
The American companies were identified as Albertos Gold Corp and PensonCorp.
The application for endorsement by a local government unit, a requirement imposed on mining companies by the national government, has been forwarded for action to Davao City councilor Danilo Dayanghirang, chair of the Davao City Council committee on environment and natural resources.
The American companies are applying to explore and mine gold and copper in about 3,600 hectares in Paquibato and Marilog.
The applications reportedly have been endorsed by the Region Eleven office of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB).