October 26, 2014     Philippines
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August 19, 2013
Oil spill victims call for closure of Petron Depot

Remembering the oil pipe leak that occurred in 2010, which also caused sufferings on the coastal villages in Cavite, the newly-formed group, the Close Petron Depot Movement (CPDM), said the Petron oil depot poses a “constant threat to the lives of fisherfolk and urban poor.”

By MARYA SALAMAT
Bulatlat.com

MANILA – Residents of Cavite formed and launched the Close Petron Depot Movement (CPDM) on Aug 16, and immediately planned to lead solidarity peoples’ march of fisherfolk and urban poor from Cavite coastal areas victimized by the recent oil spill calamity.

The fisherfolk and urban poor the along the coastal areas of Cavite formed the Close Petron Depot Movement (CPDM) after they found out that instead of being provided assistance, as previously announced, an alleged “Petron Loan Assistance” has started enlisting a thousand fisherfolk in Cavite to offer them loans.

“It is infuriating that instead of providing ‘danyos’ to compensate for the damages caused by their negligence, Petron plans to give loans to oil spill victims,” CPDM Spokesperson Emmanuel Asuncion said.

The CPDM and the protesting fisherfolk and urban poor in the province slammed Petron and the futility of its announced “efforts” to at least recompense the peoples’ losses in fishing livelihood as a result of the oil spill. They also condemned the oil spill’s irreversible damages to human health and natural resources.

Cavite fisherfolk, urban poor show their anger at Petron's refusal to compensate victims of oil spill in Cavite (Photo courtesy of CPDM / bulatlat.com)

Cavite fisherfolk, urban poor show their anger at Petron’s refusal to compensate victims of oil spill (Photo courtesy of CPDM / bulatlat.com)


The group is now pushing for the closure of Petron Depot in Rosario, Cavite, saying it poses a “constant threat to the lives of fisherfolk and urban poor.” They remembered the damages of the same disaster in 2010, when petroleum also leaked from the same Petron pipeline.

Loida Villon, a poor fisherfolk who sustained bruises and got her feet swollen after she took part in cleaning up the oil spills, related her story during the CPDM press conference last Aug 17.

Another mother shared in the press conference how her child still experiences difficulty in breathing because of having inhaled diesel fumes.

“This depot is not helping the people of Cavite and it has actually become detrimental to us,” Asuncion said.

Branding the Petron Depot as a “catastrophic facility,” the CPDM and supporters demanded its immediate closure. They questioned Aquino’s continuing implementation of the Oil Deregulation Law, which they are blaming for having removed important and fundamental control over giant oil companies.

Instead of loans, Petron should give each family-victim P20,000 in cash and six-month subsidy of rice and groceries to help them endure the economic damages of the oil spill, the CPDM said.

This Monday, Aug 19, the CPDM’s planned solidarity march from Rosario Plaza to Petron Depot pushed through as an indoor protest instead in their evacuation sites. The entire stretch of roads in Cavite going to Bacoor, to Zapote, to Binakayan, and from Long Beach to Noveleta and Salinas to Noveleta, Cavite are flooded from thigh to waist level, prompting the organizers to redirect the planned march into an indoor protest at their evacuation sites.

The CPDM has already written on indigenous materials the ‘People’s Announcement of Closure of Petron Depot at Rosario, Cavite’. They intend to throw fish bones at a caricature of a Petron Depot to demonstrate what it is doing to their livelihood. (http://bulatlat.com)

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