Lumads file complaint against village chief over felled trees

A COMPLAINT was filed against a barangay captain for allegedly hacking down trees in an ancestral domain area without first securing permission from the Lumads.

Barangay Captain Fernando O. Banayao of Gumitan in Marilog District was accused by Datu Benito A. Paundag for cutting trees inside the ancestral domain of the Matigsalug-Manobo without certification from Community Bases Forest Management Agreement (CBFMA) and Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR XI).

Barangay Gumitan is covered within the Certificate of Ancestral Domain Title (CADT R10-KIT-0703-0011).

The case was filed before the Office of Vice Mayor Paolo Z. Duterte on July 21, 2015 and now being discussed at the committee level of the city council.

Paundag, in his complaint, claimed that Banayao started cutting trees on June 24, 2012 without permit from the CADT holders and DENR. Since he didn’t want any trouble, Paundag issued a certificate so Banayo cound sell those falcata trees. But Paundag and the DENR warned Banayao not to do it again.

However, according to Paundag, Banayao was again cutting trees without their permission last 2015.

Paundag added that lauan and molave logs cut in their ancestral domain are being transported through Davao River and sold at Barangay Tamugan also in Marilog District.

Paundag also attached a certificate of no settlement dated on July 11, 2015 from the Supreme Tribal Council for Peace and Development (STCPD), chaired by Datu Ruben Labawan.

The certificate showed that the STCPD called for series of settlement of the problem between the parties involved but failed because Banayao snubbed those scheduled dates. Datu Buaya Ansayod and Datu Banoy also tried to mediate but it also failed due to none appearance of Banayao.

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