Duterte orders DENR to clean up Boracay in 6 months

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

President Rodrigo Duterte even threatened to close down the island of Boracay. (FILE PHOTO)

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 10) — The President has ordered Environment Secretary Roy Cimatu to clean up the tourist destination Boracay in six months.

"I told Cimatu, Cimatu is a general, he was assigned here. 'I'll give you six months. Clean the g***** thing,'" President Rodrigo Duterte said at the Manila Times Business Forum in Davao City Friday.

He also threatened to shut down the island because of pollution.

"I will close Boracay. Boracay is a cesspool," he said. "You go into the water, it's smelly. Smell of what? Shit."

The Malay Municipal Tourism Office said the island saw over two million visitors from January to December 2017, a 16-percent increase from the number of tourist arrivals in 2016.

But Duterte said Boracay will lose the influx of visitors.

"There will be a time that no more foreigner will go there because he will have — when he goes back to the plane to where he belongs, he will be full of shit going back and forth to the restroom," He said.

In 2017, Chinese visitors frequented Boracay most with 375,284 nationals visiting the island. They are followed by Koreans and Taiwanese nationals.

Cimatu previously instructed the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) field offices which hold jurisdiction over Boracay to inspect the sewer facilities of the island businesses, after reports that many of them were not connected to Boracay's sewer system.

Other reports claim businesses throw wastewater into the sea, which further pollutes it.

"We need a serious and honest-to-goodness crackdown on these erring establishments that are contributing to water pollution in Boracay," Cimatu said in a press statement on Tuesday.

The DENR Chief said they are coordinating with the Department of Tourism to identify establishments violating the law.

Under the DENR's procedures, a notice of violation will be issued against violators. The establishment will then be given one or two months to address their violations.