Middle ground: New DENR chief Cimatu to allow responsible mining, is willing to work with Lopez

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  • New environment secretary promised to be middle ground between development and environment
  • He will allow mining so long as it’s responsible
  • He also expressed willingness to meet, work with Gina Lopez

MANILA, Philippines – Environment secretary Roy Cimatu promised to bring a moderate and a calming influence in the Department of Environment and Natural Resources amid the departure of outspoken environmentalist Gina Lopez.

“’Yung character ko naman kasi moderate at tsaka kalma lang ako. ‘Yun ang dating ko,” GMA News quoted him as saying.

[I have a moderate character and I am calm. That’s my strong point.]

In opting for the middle ground, Cimatu said he will allow mining so long as it’s done responsibly.

“Ako naman, mining is allowed as long as they’re responsible, does not destroy our environment, as long as it is properly handled. Ganoon naman ‘yon,” he said.

[As for me, mining is allowed as long as they’re responsible, does not destroy our environment, as long as it’s properly handled. That’s how it is.]

At the same time, Cimatu expressed his willingness to meet and work with his predecessor.

“I will try my best to gain their respect. I admire the passion sa environment ni former secretary. I will be honored to meet her and try to get some insights sa environment,” he said.

Cimatu added that he will personally assess the situation on the ground so he can make proper decisions.

“Maiintindihan ko na rin ‘yan. I will just continue ‘yung mga naiwan na mga papers on the table, mga kung ano mang kailangan ma-review. At the same time, ma-process ko na din,” he said.

[I will understand it in time. I will just continue working on the papers left on the table and the rest that need to be reviewed. At the same time, I can process them.]

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