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Sunday, December 22, 2019

Netizens united to protect Sagada from Ayala planning to build recreation sites

Photo Courtesy || Naks PH
Cordillera - Social media netizens have voiced out their opposition of a Manila-based corporation to develop a 20-hectare private property in Sagada into a massive tourism sites. 

In a Facebook post campaign #NoToAyalaInSagada by a Facebook page Naks PH which reached almost 1 million shares with 600 comments, many netizens have commented they are with the people of Sagada in opposing this big corporation setting foot in their town. 

This comes after Sagada Mayor James Pooten confirmed a report that Ayala group of companies is planning to develop a 20-hectare private property owned by a local family into a massive recreation site. 

In a comment, concerned netizens reminded iSagada of the possible bad effect of the plan with regards to the environment because big establishment will just destroy the natural beauty of Sagada.

One netizen wrote, "Keep Sagada from becoming another Baguio. Sagada now is described as having the atmosphere of Baguio back in the 1960s. Baguio was more attractive in the 1960s. Too much commercial tourism will kill Sagada's mystique".

Another one commented, "A big NO! I hope that Sagada, regardless of their booming tourism would greatly consider preserving whatever is left of the natural resources. Honestly, considering Sagada's condition right now, it's already becoming "suffocating". It's actually one of my favorite run to places and that the people of Sagada will resist whatever big companies has to offer." 

The campaign which is now trending online had strong message to iSagada not to allow any outsiders from taking their lands in exchange for a small return, but have a big detrimental effect to the environment.

"Enough of the cutting of trees and destroying our precious land in the Cordilleras by this capitalist who only care about profits. Sagada can survive without this big corporations. Sagada has thriving and sustainable tourism. Tourists and visitors come to Sagada because of the beautiful people and amazing places." the campaign post read. 

Many netizens stated that they are not in favor of any kind of big establishments to be built in the town because this will just destroy the natural beauty of their town. 

In order to protect Sagada from these rich businessmen and oligarchs, a petition has been made by residents. 

"We firmly oppose the entry of Ayala or anybody who would dispossess us of our ancestral heritage. This is our patrimony and must remain so for generations, this is a statement upholding Sagada customary laws that our land is not for sale, lease, and mortgage, patenting to outside private and corporate entities." the petition read.

Petitioners claimed that Sagada has been blessed with a spectacular landscape and source of life, pride for the people, and the envy of visitors who come form adventure, employment and relaxation, Sunstar reported.

"Rich businessmen and oligarchs, showbiz personalities, have expressed interest to buy, lease or control our land. We have a long historical tradition of fighting for our communal and ancestral lands. We have denied entry of Cellophil, Philcarbon, big mining corporate interests. Now once more dark clouds hover above community, posting danger not only to local businesses but to Sagada's overall social governance by giving way to outside moneyed interests while to eventually pushing local political leaders to margins," the petition added.

source || Naks PH, Sunstar.


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