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Remulla says BuCor HQ at Masungi Georeserve not final yet


Justice Secretary Jesus Crispin Remulla on Monday said plans to build the new headquarters of the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) on a land in Tanay, Rizal is not yet final.

“Actually, wala namang final decision doon eh. It is something that will be suggested to us by BuCor, but we are not micro-managing BuCor. We are allowing them to explore the possibilities for the future,” Remulla said during an ambush interview following a culminating activity at the New Bilibid Prison (NBP).

Last week, BuCor said it is eyeing to build its new headquarters on the property that the Masungi Georeserve Foundation claims is within its territory.

Meanwhile, Remulla said the government will address the issue on Masungi  with one voice.

“Nag-usap kami kagabi, kahapon, ni [Environment] Secretary Antonia Loyzaga. We will speak with one voice on this matter. There should be no problem, pro-environment tayo. Hindi natin kalaban ang environment,” he said.

(Secretary Loyzaga and I talked last night, yesterday. We will speak with one voice on the matter. There should be no problem. We are pro-environment. The environment is not our enemy.)

Remulla said there were just people who were “alarmists” on the matter.

“Ang mahalaga lang sa Masungi ay ma-preserve ‘yan. Ngunit ‘yung ibang lupa na hindi nagagamit ay magamit naman ng gobyerno kasi the title of even Masungi belongs to the government,” he said.

(What is important is for Masungi to be preserved. But the land that is not being used should be used by the government because even the title of Masungi belongs to the government.)

“It is a heritage, it is a heritage of the Filipino people. It does not belong to one foundation at all but to all the Filipino people,” he added.

The Justice secretary said if the plans push through, the NBP will become a government center.

“And probably a lot of it, some parts of it, will be devoted to a museum. Kasi nga mahaba ang kasaysayan nitong Muntinlupa,” he said.

In a statement sent to GMA News Online last week, Masungi Georeserve Foundation appealed to BuCor officer-in-charge Gregorio Catapang Jr. "to deem the environment as central to all issues and reconsider BuCor's plans."

“We also call on President Bongbong Marcos, DENR Secretary Yulo-Loyzaga, and DOJ Secretary Boying Remulla to aid in this matter in the interest of the Philippines’ natural heritage,” it added.—AOL, GMA Integrated News

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