Maramag is Bukidnon’s 3rd LGU with moratorium on expansion of plantations

MALAYBALAY CITY – Aside from the cities of Malaybalay and Valencia, the Municipality of Maramag is the third local government in Bukidnon, whose local legislative council has passed a resolution imposing a moratorium on expansion of plantations, records at the Bukidnon Sangguniang Panlalawigan showed.

Sangguniang Bayan of the town passed the resolution on June 25, 2012, according to the minutes of the provincial board. The town council actually passed the resolution ahead of that of Valencia city council, which passed its own moratorium resolution on July 16.

The Malaybalay city council passed the resolution on April 10 imposing a moratorium on the expansion of agricultural plantations citing environmental and agricultural concerns.

Both city councils’ resolutions were prompted by earlier resolutions passed by the Association of Barangay Councils (ABC).

Maramag’s Resolution No. 2012-471 is entitled “Resolution declaring indefinite moratorium on the application for establishment/operation of agro-industrial plantations specifically banana and pineapple plantations in the Municipality of Maramag.”

A resolution is an expression of sentiment among the legislators. For it to be enforceable, it has to be followed up with an ordinance.

Both the Malaybalay and Valencia city councils have eyed more in-depth study for a possible ordinance imposing a moratorium of expansion of plantations, specifically banana and pineapple.

The provincial board referred the resolution to the committee on laws and rules and privileges for committee hearing. The provincial board exercises oversight function on the local governments.

Board member Jay Albarece said the Malaybalay and Valencia resolutions were approved but the Maramag resolution is still due for committee review.

He noted, however, that they will only check if the resolution is inconsistent with any ordinance or if there are irregularities such as but not limited to singling out of one company, among others.

Albarece, who chairs the committee on laws, said they have noticed the different resolutions passed so it was already discussed among board members.

But he said so far there is still no move yet for the provincial board to pass a provincial level declaration. (Walter I. Balane/Bukidnon News)