What will happen to the lands in Boracay once rehabilitation is done?

Maria Romero
PUBLISHED June 14, 2018 04:28 pm
Photo from Department of Tourism/Facebook

(Inside Manila) Boracay’s unprecedented closure casted shadows of hopes to bring back the island’s clamor, yet for some it sparked unnecessary qualms for at least 30,000 jobs affected in line with the cleanup.

Questions of whether the environment department will deliver a “new boracay” or the construction of luxury casino will still push through have been around the corner since the beginning of the island’s closure. But there is a more lingering question now: what exactly will happen to the lands in Boracay once rehabilitation is done?

President Rodrigo Duterte on Tuesday said that he wants to distribute the Boracay lands to the locals once the restoration is finished so that locals can sell it for higher price. If they wish, they can even sell it to big businesses.

Pres. Duterte pointed out that his sole intention after the environmental rehabilitation of the island was to give away the lands under land reform program.

“One day, should you sell it, maybe your daughters and sons will reap at least a little money, even for a moment. It won’t last for long,” he explained in his speech before the newly-elected barangay captains in Central Luzon at the ASEAN Convention Center in Pampanga.

He clarified that as much as he wanted the lands to be owned by the natives, he knew for sure that it will be inevitably sold because that’s how he thought about things.

“Eventually because of money, they’d sell, especially if we’re no longer around. I will give the land to the natives now by way of land reform. In time, there will be resorts established again there,” he pointed out. This, according to the president, was also the same reason why land reform failed in Mindanao.

In early April, it can be recalled that the highest leader of the land once said that since Boracay is wholly state-owned, the lands would only be used as agricultural and forestal land.

In the meantime, he is encouraging the people not to intervene while the cleanup is ongoing and promised that once it’s done, he will return the island to its people.



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