Navotas City fisherfolk petition against the demolition of mussel farms and fish traps

This article is available in Pilipino

Navotas City fisherfolk led by the Pambansang Lakas ng Kilusang Mamamalakaya ng Pilipinas (Pamalakaya)-Navotas today, June 14, picketed before the Navotas Regional Trial Court (RTC) as they filed a petition for the local government to stop the demolition of their mussel farms and fish traps. Four hundred petitioners asked the court to issue a writ of preliminary injunction and a temporary restraining order (TRO) against the demolition.

Thousands of city fisherfolk, workers and vendors lost their livelihoods due to the demolition of hundreds of mussel farms along the Navotas City coast. Demolition began on March 16, covering more than six kilometers long and three kilometers wide.

The residents do not believe the local government’s claim that the removal of their mussel farms and fish traps is based on the Supreme Court mandamus in 2008 ordering the clean up of Manila Bay. They said it clearly serves the 650-hectare Navotas Bay Reclamation Project that is being pushed by the local government and its partner Argonbay Construction Company. Argonbay is a subsidiary of San Miguel Corporation owned by Ramon Ang.

In the petition, the residents also asked the court for the local government to restore its demolished mussel farms.

“We request the Court to quickly look into the case and give it due course. We also urge all fisherfolk in Navotas and throughout Manila Bay to unite and demand action from the relevant government agencies to stop the further destruction of our fishing grounds, which sustain the lives of thousands,” Ka Fernando Hicap, Pamalakaya national president, said.

The Navotas Bay Reclamation Project is one of the 22 reclamation projects in Manila Bay. According to data from the Philippine Reclamation Authority (PRA) in 2023, there are 187 existing and approved reclamation projects nationwide.

AB: Navotas City fisherfolk petition against the demolition of mussel farms and fish traps