MANILA, Philippines — Manny Galvez, of the Coalition of Clean Air Advocates has expressed opposition to the appointment of Roy Cimatu as the Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) during Wednesday’s confirmation hearing of the Commission on Appointments (CA).
Galvez questioned the DENR’s procurement of the quality monitoring equipment Differential Optical Absorption Spectroscopy or DOAS.
“These DOAS equipment are without market study up to now at the time of the procurement, they run but they are now truly function under perform as per claim specifications,” he said.
Galvez previously raised the same issue during the appointment hearing of former Environment Secretary Gina Lopez.
However, Senator Gringo Honasan noted, Cimatu has been on the position for only several months, adding that he sees nothing wrong with the new DENR Chief.
“The problem Mr. Galvez to my mind is systemic … it’s the system,” Honasan said.
In terms of the programs of the department, Cimatu said he wants to increase the number of DENR personnel in the provinces.
‘I’ve been proposing for the increase in number of people to be assigned in the provinces. There are not enough [personnel] to enforce environmental laws like the clean water [law] or what we call solid waste management,” Cimatu said.
The Environment Secretary also assured the powerful bicameral body that he will not tolerate anyone who would collude in conducting illegal activities like cutting of trees.
“If the personnel of the DENR themselves are the ones violating the law, I (inaudible) your Honor that I will not tolerate these things. I have already warned many people down there, ‘I’m different from other guys’,” Cimatu said.
The CA will resume its hearing on the appointment of Secretary Cimatu. During the next hearing, the bicameral body will hear several oppositors to Cimatu’s appointment.
Cimatu is the second retired general that served in the DENR. The first was former Armed Forces and Defense Chief Angelo Reyes. – Nel Maribojoc | UNTV News & Rescue