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Last February 24, March 11 and 12, 2020, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau Regional Office No. V (MGB RO-V) has issued Cease and Desist Orders (CDO) stopping illegal small scale miners in Purok 5, Barangay Tugos, Camarines Norte; Barangay Del Rosario, Pamplona, Camarines Sur; and Barangay San Vicente, Virac, Catanduanes, respectively.

CDO last February 24 was issued after it was found out during a joint investigation by technical personnel of MGB-V and PENRO- Camarines Norte that the small mining operation in Purok 5, Barangay Tugos, Camarines Norte has no small scale mining contract issued by the Provincial Mining Regulatory Board (PMRB) of Camarines Norte.

Likewise, the March 11 CDO issued was issued on the basis of the recommendation of the joint field monitoring conducted by technical personnel of MGB-V and CENRO-Sipocot, Camarines Sur last January 24, 2020 in response to the complaint on alleged illegal quarry activity in Barangay Del Rosario, Pamplona, Camarines Sur found to have an active quarrying during the time of field inspection and the presence of heavy equipment in the area. In addition to the absence of valid existing Mining permit pursuant to R.A. 7942 and DENR Administrative Order (DAO) no. 2010-21.

Finally, the March 12 issued CDO orders to stop any form of illegal mining/quarrying and processing activities within the barangay of San Vicente, Virac, Catanduanes as a result of a joint field investigation conducted by the technical personnel from MGB-V, EnMO, EMB-V and PENRO-Catanduanes regarding the proliferation of sand and gravel extraction near the shore which had been operated by the residents of Barangay San Vicente.

The persons affected are those named in the CDO and all other persons, although not specifically named, illegally working in the mining area or one who violates the mining law.

The authority of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau to issue CDO is provided for under Section 118 of DAO no. 2010-21, the Implementing Rules and Regulations of Republic Act 7942 which states that the Bureau Officers which include the Regional Director and other Bureau personnel, duly authorized by the Director, DENR personnel duly authorized by the Secretary, Permittee, Contractor, Permit Holder, and other duly deputized personnel shall have authority to arrest offenders, and confiscate/seize illegally-sourced minerals/mineral products and other tools, equipment and conveyance used in the commission of offense. It shall be the primary responsibility of the Permittee, Contractor, or Permit Holder to police the permit/contract area from any illegal mining operations.

The Mines and Geosciences Bureau, under the Department of Environment and Natural Resources is responsible for the conservation, management, development and proper use of the country’s mineral resources.