environmental watchdog today called on the main contenders for Manila’s mayoral
post not to forget about the environment as they hold their respective
proclamation rallies on March 31 for former President Joseph Estrada and on
April 1 for incumbent Mayor Alfredo Lim.
The EcoWaste Coalition appealed to Estrada and Lim to use their kick-off
assemblies to demonstrate their commitment to Mother Earth by rolling out a
“clean”campaign and by baring a “green” platform.
“As senior politicians with vast experience and influence, we urge both
President Estrada and Mayor Lim to campaign clean and to ask their fellow
candidates and their supporters to do the same,” said Aileen Lucero, Acting
National Coordinator, EcoWaste Coalition.
“By campaigning clean, we mean no littering, no nailing or hanging of posters
on trees, no posting of campaign materials outside designated areas, no
excessive noise and, of course, no trash talks and dirty gimmicks,” she
“President Estrada and Mayor Lim, we hope, will agree that political victory
should not be at the expense of our fragile environment,” she added.
In addition, the EcoWaste Coalition asked both camps to reveal their
“green”electoral platforms pointing out that the public have the “right to
“We call upon President Estrada and Mayor Lim to disclose how they plan to
address key environmental problems of common concern to Manila’s residents such
as waste and sanitation,” Lucero said.
“How do they plan to resolve, for instance, the persistent garbage problem at
Onyx and Zobel Roxas Sts. in San Andres or the monstrous plastic garbage in
Divisoria, especially during peak shopping season ?,” she asked.
“How do they plan to improve the working and living conditions of the informal
waste sector in Tondo and elsewhere who contributes to increased recycling
rates and avoided disposal charges at no cost to the city government?,” she
“How do they plan to manage biodegradable discards, which constitute about
half of the waste volume, from households and other major sources such as
public markets and restaurants, so these are kept out of dumpsites and
landfills to prevent the formation of methane?,” she further asked.
The group also urged the mayoral candidates to disclose their positions on
burning environment-related controversies and challenges such as the 1)
proposed reclamation project off Manila Bay, 2) pollution at Pier 18 Garbage
Transfer Station, 3) the toxic impact of unregulated junkshop recycling of
electronic waste in San Andres and Tondo, and 4) the illegal sale of
lead-tainted toys, mercury-laden cosmetics and cyanide-laced silver jewelry
cleaners, particularly in Binondo, Divisoria and Quiapo.