Labor, environment groups join trash ‘war’

April 30, 2019

AT least three labor organizations and an environmental group have joined the growing clamor for the Canadian government to solve once and for all the long-festering garbage dumping issue that has infuriated no less than President Rodrigo Duterte.

Apart from the EcoWaste Coalition (EWC), the Associated Labor Unions-Trade Union Congress of the Philippines (ALU-TUCP), Sentro ng Nagkakaisa at Progresibong Manggagawa (SENTRO) and the Buklurang Manggagawang Pilipino (BMB) yesterday sought the speedy removal of the illegal wastes out of the Philippines.

Also yesterday, enraged citizens led by the EWC also staged a protest rally outside the Canadian Embassy to echo President Duterte’s concern against the Canadian government over the garbage dumping issue.

“We seek Canada’s compliance with its responsibility as ‘State of export’ to reclaim the wastes illegally sent to the Philippines.  Canada’s immediate action will show its sincerity toward the effective implementation of the Basel Convention of which it is a party,” said ALU-TUCP spokesperson Allan Tanjusay.

Citing the Basel Convention, Tanjusay said that the “State of export” of illegal traffic waste “shall ensure that the wastes in question are taken back by the exporter or the generator or, if necessary, by itself into the State of export... within 30 days from the time the State of export has been informed about the illegal traffic or such other period of time as States concerned may agree.”

Josua Mata, SENTRO Secretary-General assailed what he termed as “waste colonialism” that is treating developing countries as dumping ground for wastes and toxics from industrialized economies.

According to BMB chairman Leody de Guzman, Canada should take back their garbage and stop exporting pollution.