Bauko demands share from Sabangan hydro

BAUKO, Mountain Province  – The local government is demanding the Aboitiz-owned Hydroelectric Development Corporation (HEDCOR) Sabangan, Inc. to grant the appropriate share of its host and neighboring communities in the municipality as some of its facilities are situated within the jurisdiction of the town and the headwaters of the river system providing water for the 14-megawatt hydro power plant is situated within the Mount Data forest reservation.

 

Mayor Abraham B. Akilit said the municipal government already sent its initial demand to the company for a share of the royalty and taxes the company is paying to the municipal government of Sabangan because the company’s intake is located within the municipality, particularly barangay Monamon Norte, while its transmission lines traverse barangay Otucan aside from the fact that the headwaters of the river system where the company’s hydro plant source the water to run its turbines come from Bauko.

“Bauko deserves its due share from the operation of the Sabangan mini-hydropower plant and we want to assert our right to demand from the company the payment of the town’s rightful share in terms of real property and business taxes and other payments due the local government. We do not understand why the company refuses to formally respond to our earlier inquiry on how we are going to access our share from the operation of the 14-megawatt mini-hydropower plant,” Akilit stressed.

The mayor also questioned the company on how it was able to build its facilities within the jurisdiction of some of the town’s barangays even within the required free and prior informed consent (FPIC) which should be issued by the indigenous peoples in the affected areas.

According to him, the local government has in its possession  appropriate documents which do not show that the IPs issued their FPIC for HEDCOR Sabangan, Inc. to build its facilities within the town’s barangays, a clear violation of the provisions of Republic Act (RA) 8371 or the Indigenous Peoples Rights Act (IPRA).

He explained that when the company’s facilities were bombed by members of the New Peoples Army (NPA), it was Bauko that was placed in a bad light as the damaged facilities are located in barangay Otucan and that the company is operating the facilities without paying to the municipal government any single centavo contrary to the IPRA provisions that host and neighboring communities of development projects must be granted the necessary share from the operations of projects that exploit, develop and utilize the State’s resources for the growth and development of said areas.

He asserted that the local government intends to use its share from the operation of the Sabangan hydro power plants for the development of the town’s host communities, aside from improving the delivery of health care services to the people considering that the municipality is trying to maximize the generation of whatever resources from those exploiting, developing and utilizing its resources for the benefit of overall development in the municipality.

By HENT

 

EL Kikasa

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Mt. Province Destinations

Alab Petroglyph

The Alab Petroglyph is a huge rock formation that was inscribed with bows and arrows and is believed to have contained the ancient fertility rites of natives.

Backstrap and Loom weaving Houses ( Samoki Weaving)

This is where one can see an actual weaving by the locals. Tourists can come to this place for a photo-op and a chance to try their hand at weaving. Souvenirs can also be bought at these houses.

Bay-yo Rice Terraces

Bay-yo Rice Terraces are a smallet type of terraces that is spectacular to look at for tourists.

Bomod-ok Falls

Cascading white water and with a forceful might sending sprays of water that even on a hot day gives you an idea of just how freezingly-cold the pool at the bottom of the falls is truly a majestic sight to behold.

Bontoc Village Museum

It features a range of artifacts crafted by the Igorots for domestic purposes, to be used for traditional celebrations or practices. Inside the museum, one could appreciate the distinct richness of the Igorot's way of life.

Mt. Amuyao

The 8th highest peak in the Philippines with an elevation of 2,702 meters above sea level. Its summit provides its climbers a breathtaking panoram of Mountain Province, Isabela, Nueva Vizcaya, Ifugao and Cagayan Valley.

Mt. Clitoris (Tadian)

This is a sacred mountain regardless of its name. Standing proudly and serenely over 3 villages, this conical-shaped land mass is said to be home to some enchanted eels.

Mountain Province Trade Center

A mini-shopping center managed by the Department of Trade and Industry where skillfully crafted indigenous products are sold.

Sagada Hanging Coffins

Having their coffins hangng at the limestone sliffs is an imrtant tribal custom that thee locals have complied with through hundred of years.

Sumaguuing Caves

Two hundred fifty or so steps down a slipery trail, one can reach the Sumaguing Cave. This is one of the Philippines famous spelunking sites, it is a spectacular place to go to for the adventorous soul.