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PIA Press Release

MMDA Chairman Tolentino to lead in Manila Bay's coastal cleanup

Manila (7 October) -- In continuing compliance with the Supreme Court's order to clean-up Manila Bay, Metropolitan Manila Development Authority (MMDA) Chairman Francis Tolentino will lead the 700 workers and volunteers in clean-up drive along Roxas Boulevard's coastline.

The major clean-up activity on October 7, 2010, which will cover the stretch of the Manila Bay's shoreline from the US Embassy to Manila Yacht Club, will start at 7:30 am. "We will launch this clean-up operation to further stir awareness among Metro Manila residents about the importance of our historic Manila Bay. Caring for the environment, especially our waterways, is not the sole responsibility of the government, we should all do our part," Tolentino said.

He pointed out that the Manila Bay coastal cleanup will be conducted to highlight efforts to control flooding and to remind the public that the trash they throw indiscriminately ends up in our waterways.

The MMDA chairman will personally lead the MMDA contingent in picking up trash along the bay's shores. The agency will also bring in heavy equipment such as trucks and dredging machineries.

The agency's workforce in the cleanup will also be composed of more 400 MMDA volunteers who underwent rigid flood incident response training. Tolentino said this will put to test the knowledge and skills they acquired from the month-long training.

A simple graduation ceremony will also be held tomorrow for the volunteers who successfully passed the training. They will be given certificates for completing the program.

The volunteers were trained on disaster response, water safety training and lifeboat handling, all of which are focused on their primary mission - to save lives during disasters such as flooding, Tolentino added.

In December 2008, the Supreme Court ordered the MMDA, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and other agencies to clean up Manila Bay in accordance with their mandate under existing laws.

In the unanimous decision of the court en banc, the tribunal came up with specific orders to the MMDA, DENR and the other agencies for a coordinated cleanup, restoration and preservation of the "sea resource, playground and... historical landmark." (PIA) [top]

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