Barangay Captain Franco Tito of Diwalwal, Monkayo, Compostela Valley said the national government, instead of inviting foreign investors to mine the country?s ore reserves, should better help the small-scale miners.Tito
made the statement after being informed that the government lawyers, on behalf of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), have appealed the earlier ruling of the Supreme Court which nullified certain provisions of Republic Act 7942, or the Philippine Mining Act of 1995.
In its appeal before the High Court, the Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) claimed the government would loss about $10 billion in profit, including 7,445 jobs because of the ruling.
On January 27, the High Court tagged as unconstitutional provisions of the law that would allow government to sign agreements with foreign companies for mining purposes.The court also nullified the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the law and the Financial and Technical Agreement between the government and the Western Mining Corp.
, a company that started the exploration of the copper mining in Tampakan, South Cotabato. Tito
said the government seemed bent on providing the foreign companies with profit, while in the process dislocating the small scale miners whose livelihood is dependent on mining.
?Why should the government give to the multinationals the mining area when we can do it?? asked Tito
.The government should instead help the small miners by providing them financial assistance so they will be able to upgrade their mining mechanisms for better profitability, he