MANILA, Philippines (UPDATED 7:26 p.m.) — President Rodrigo Duterte lashed out at the oligarchs who exploit the country’s natural resources particularly, those in the mining and fisheries industry.
“I am fighting a monster. Believe me, I will destroy their clutches on our nation,” he said at an environment summit at Ateneo de Davao University. Duterte vowed anew to go after mining firms which continue to practice environmentally destructive open-pit methods and corporations which are granted mining permits through money, influence and sheer greed.
The president scored the reckless grant of permits solely on the basis that a mining firm can afford it.
Foregoing a prepared speech, Duterte pressed for a stop to destructive mining practices simply because the land has already taken a beating.
“What I am sure of, I am a worker of government. Mining is a sunset industry and also logging. It is already too late. If there were 24 hours in a day, logging is on its 25th hour. We cannot cut trees anymore,” he said.
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