Duterte to declare ‘state of calamity’ over Boracay environmental crisis

A pipe in Boracay spewing raw sewage into the sea of Boracay Island. Picture by nomadichands.com

President Duterte has said that he plans to declare a state of calamity in Boracay, weeks after ordering a cleanup of the tourist hot-spot in six months.

The president also warned the courts not to interfere in the problem by issuing a temporary restraining order.


“I know it would work [inaudible]. And that is why I will be declaring state of calamity,” he said in a speech during the oath-taking of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission at the Malacañang Palace.

“And I would caution the courts not to interfere by issuing TRO because you would just exacerbate the situation. And the worst baka hindi kita paniwalaan,” he added.

The president said that the problems in Boracay were a clear public health and public safety issue, which therefore allowed him to issue such a declaration.


“I can order for this thing to happen because it is public interest, public safety, and public health for your information,” he said.

The president also ordered the local government unit of Boracay to cooperate with the national government and hasten the cleanup.

“For as long as there are shit coming out of those pipes draining to the sea, I will never give you the time of the day na bumalik diyan,” he said.


Last week, Interior Officer-in-Charge Secretary Eduardo Año said that the Department of Interior and Local Government was considering the declaration of state of calamity over the famous white-sand island along with a 60-day shutdown of commercial establishments.

This after he ordered an investigation to look into the possible liability of local government officials over the “environmental degradation” of the world-famous beach resort.

The investigation, Año said, would probe local executives who issued building permits, occupancy permits and even business permits despite non-compliance with applicable laws and regulations.