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Marinduque Mining Legacy Forum

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AMONG 15 other schools, the University of Santo Tomas (UST) took part in a three-month campaign of a non-government organization to generate student awareness and to speed up deferred legal processes on a notorious mining disaster in Marinduque 17 years ago.


NGO Legal Rights and Natural Resources Center – Kasama sa Kalikasan (LRC-KsK), with the participation of five foreign interns from the Association Internationale des Étudiants en Sciences Économiques et Commerciales, the world’s largest youth-run organization, facilitated a photo exhibit and forum at the UST Civil Law Auditorium to launch its latest advocacy entitled “Marinduque Quest for Justice Campaign” last August 26.


The campaign “aims at raising the awareness of the public about the Marinduque mining accident and the negative impact of mining to the environment,” said Joey Shiu, an LRC-KsK intern and a student from the Chinese University of Hong Kong.


It also hopes to pressure the government to hasten the legal processes on hold over the past 17 years so that the residents of Marinduque,which is an island province that is geographically located at the center of the Philippines, would one day be given the justice they rightfully deserve.

 

Atty. Minerva Quintela of LRC-KsK presented through a photo exhibit how the mining disaster turned the once clean and untouched island province into a polluted mess and how it affected the people of Marinduque gravely through the slideshow of photos. Most of the subjects in the photographs are senior citizens and their severe diseases that are caused by the effect of mining.


The photo exhibit narrated the background of the mining accident and focused on informing the visitors of the impact the mining industry has not only on Marinduque, but on the Philippines as well. It lectured the audience to make smart and eco-friendly choices.


Experts also spoke about the problems in the island and various law and topics covering mining in the Philippines in a forum  that followed the photo exhibit.


National Coordinator of Alyansa Tigil Mina (ATM), Jaybee Garganera, presented figures of how much the mining companies benefitted from the place and resources of their land.


ATM is an advocacy group and a people’s movement that supports the rights of the Filipinos against the enduring injustices related to mining.

 

But things began to heat up and left the audience in anxious silence when the former governor of Marinduque objected the said figures shown by Garganera and began a mini debate with the speakers.


In the end, both parties just agreed to help each other to solve the remaining problems of the island province.


Vice Governor of Marinduque and head of the Marinduquenong Tomasino, Dr. Antonio Uy, gave the closing remarks to put the event to a close.


What happened before

1969 – Placer Dome Inc. established the Tapian mine, its first open pit copper mine run by Marcopper, in Marinduque.


1975 – The National Pollution Control Commission issued the permit to allow Marcopper-Placer Dome Inc. to dump ore residues in Calancan Bay through a submerged disposal system. But the tailings were dumped via surface disposal until the Tapian Mine became depleted, causing a long causeway of tailings which extended out into the middle of the bay.


1991 – A dam was installed for the tailings on a tributary of Mogpog River, one kilometer north of the new Marcopper mine site in San Antonio.


1993 – The typhoon “Monang” prompted the dam to break, causing a flood of toxic tailings to the Mogpog River. Two people were reported killed among the numerous livestock and destruction of crops.


2005 – Marinduque’s Sangguniang Panlalawigan declared a 50 year mining moratorium in the province. By Erika Dizon


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Dagohoy concludes University rectorship

“It is an honor to serve Asia’s oldest university, and to meet wonderful people like you. Love UST,” the former rector said on Jan. 15, as posted in the UST’s official social media pages.

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Rev. Fr. Richard Ang and Rev. Fr.Herminio Dagohoy, UST's 96th rector, during the Paskuhan mass in December 2019 | Deojon Elarco/TomasinoWeb

University of Santo Tomas (UST) Rector Very Rev. Fr. Herminio V. Dagohoy, O.P., the 96th Rector Magnificus of the University, has already concluded his eight-year term in the University.

“It is an honor to serve Asia’s oldest university, and to meet wonderful people like you. Love UST,” the former rector said on Jan. 15, as posted in the UST’s official social media pages.

Dagohoy, 55, was the 9th Rector of the UST Angelicum College and former finance director of UST Hospital before he assumed his rectorship in the University.

He was born in Hagonoy, Bulacan, and he graduated accountancy at the Polytechnic University of the Philippines before joining the Order of Preachers.

He also finished other degrees: AB Philosophy, Sacred Theology, Master of Arts in Philippine Studies, Licentiate in Philosophy, and Doctorate in Philosophy.

Rev. Fr. Richard Ang, O.P., UST Vice-Rector for seven years, is now the acting rector.

He was the former dean of the then Faculty of Philosophy and former chairman of Manpower, Scholarship, and Retirement Board Committee of the University.

Ang, during his academic years, has published several scholarly articles about philosophy such as “The Confucian Li,” “On Conceiving Ren towards Birthing Ru Jia,” and “The Concept of Ren.”

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Aegis Juris fratmen in Atio slay denied of bail petition

Manila RTC Branch 20’s resolution states that despite Castillo’s ailment, the blow delivered by the accused Aegis Juris members “is the efficient cause of death” or may have “accelerated his death” making the accused criminally liable.

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Photo by Tristan Deang/TomasinoWeb

[UPDATED] Ten main suspects in the hazing slay of Faculty of Civil Law freshman Horacio “Atio” Castillo III in 2017 were denied of their petition to post bail due to their ‘strong evidence of guilt.’

The resolution of the Manila Regional Trial Court Branch 20 on Dec. 10, 2019 states that the court is “not convinced” of the autopsy findings showing that Castillo died of Acute Tubular Necrosis (ATN), and the hazing injuries inflicted on the victim did not cause his death.

This prevents Arvin Balag, Mhin Wei Chan, Axel Hipe, Oliver Onofre, Joshua Macabili, Ralph Trangia, Robin Ramos, Jose Miguel Salamat, Danielle Rodrigo, and Marcelino Bagtang Jr. who were charged for violation of R.A. 8049 or the Anti-Hazing Law from posting bail after “finding the evidence of guilt” strong, the resolution states.

It reiterates that despite Castillo’s ailment, the blow delivered by the accused Aegis Juris members “is the efficient cause of death” or may have “accelerated his death” making the accused criminally liable.

Presence during hazing, according to the Anti-Hazing Law, is “prima facie” or proves the participation of the accused unless they did something to prevent the punishable acts committed.

The 10 fraternity members were indicted last March 2018.

Last June 17, 2019, one of the principal suspects in the case, John Paul Solano, has been convicted for obstruction of justice.

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Harry Potter-inspired Paskuhan draws 110,000 crowd

An estimated crowd of 110,000 attended the annual Paskuhan Fair concert and pyromusical show of the University which took inspiration from the book series and movie franchise Harry Potter Friday, Dec. 20.

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Photo by Jacqueline Martinez/TomasinoWeb

An estimated crowd of 110,000 attended the annual Paskuhan Fair concert and pyromusical show of the University which took inspiration from the book series and movie franchise Harry Potter Friday, Dec. 20.

The crowd estimate is higher of around 10,000 from last year’s festivities according to the UST Security Office.

The official theme of this year’s Paskuhan is “For unto us a child is born” which is taken from the book of the Prophet Isaiah.

Unfazed by the light rainfall at the start of the event, this year’s highly-anticipated program at the UST Grandstand featured some of the local bands and artists such as Himig Borhuh, Magnus Haven, Hey Billie!, Munimuni, Lola Amour, and Ben&Ben. 

However, The Juans was not able to perform due to “a non-compliance issue between the bookers and organizers of the event after hours of trying [their] best to meet halfway,” in a statement they released on Facebook.

The Salinggawi Dance Troupe of the University also graced the stage with their performance, as well as the UST Galvanize of the senior high school along with Ronins.  

Following “one Thomasian is to one non-Thomasian visitor” and “no water bottle” policies, heightened and stricter security measures were followed. 

Keeping Paskuhan #ZeroWaste

Stations for garbage segregation were also implemented to ensure that the event follows the University guidelines in maintaining the event clean and orderly.

UST Green Marshals stationed at the eight designated trash collecting bins led the campaign in keeping a zero waste Paskuhan Fair. 

Last Dec. 2, Paskuhan started with the opening of lights and the Thomasian Agape led by the University officials and Manila City Mayor Francisco “Isko Moreno” Domagoso. 

The Christmas tree and decors will remain lit every night until the first week of January, 2020.

The tradition of the annual celebration during the Christmas season in the University emerged in 1991, and was formally named Paskuhan a couple of years later. 

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