DENR open for possible Senate probe into allegedly missing dolomite beach equipment

enablePagination: false
maxItemsPerPage: 10
maxPaginationLinks: 10

Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, October 27) — The Department of Environment and Natural Resources may face another problem regarding the controversial Manila Baywalk dolomite beach, after Senator Manny Pacquiao bared plans to investigate possible anomalies in the project.

DENR Undersecretary Jonas Leones on Wednesday said they would cooperate in the possible probe, saying they would reach out to the chairman of the Senate public works and highways committee.

"We are undertaking rehabilitation, we undertook dredging activities there, and we put clean sands, we installed geoengineering interventions. Itatanong namin sa senator, ano ang nakita niyang nawawala [We will ask the senator what he found missing] so we can respond accordingly," he said in a media briefing.

Pacquiao, during his visit to Benguet on Tuesday, said the investigation on the dolomite beach will be far-reaching, adding that he will not tolerate corruption if elected president in 2022.

“Iimbestigahan din natin 'yang dolomite. Bakit? Kasi hindi lang 'yang dolomite ang project diyan. May mga makina pa dapat 'yan sa ilalim tapos hindi na nila inilagay,” he said.

[Translation: We will investigate the dolomite (beach). Why? The dolomite is not the only problem with that project. There should be equipment underneath but they were not installed there.]

The Manila Bay area has been undergoing rehabilitation since 2019 to improve the bay’s water quality and coastline appearance. But the project has been heavily criticized as ineffective in addressing the area’s real environmental issues.

The national government pushed for the opening of the artificial beach in September 2020, with presidential spokesperson Harry Roque saying the area’s aesthetics would help Filipinos cope with mental health challenges amid the COVID-19 pandemic.