By Anthony Giron, 29th September 2014;
Some residents tagged at least five industrial firms as suspects in Maalimango River fish kill late last week as concerned citizens asked authorities to look into the incident thoroughly to prevent a repetition of such tributary disaster.
Mayor Jose “Nonong” Ricafrente Jr. said his administration would revive the river with a massive cleanup and fingerlings installation to replace the lost fish and other marine life in the tributary.
Ricafrente said that it may take months or a year for the more than one kilometer-stretch river to get back to life with the actions to be taken.
The lawyer-mayor declared the river dead over the weekend after he found out, through the Bureau of Fisheries and Aquatic Resources (BFAR), that the estuary water contained a chemical deadly for fish and other marine species.
Ricafrente said that the BFAR is set to issue a statement, with their final report, today with regards to the Thursday river fish kill.
The mayor claimed that BFAR’s initial finding revealed that the river fish died “due to lack of oxygen and a still unknown chemical.”
The local chief executive assured that an investigation would be called to trace the chemical source with the BFAR’s report.
Concerned residents, who requested anonymity, said they believed that the deadly chemical came from one of at least five industrial firms with “inactive or no water treatment facilities at all.”
Chemical-emitting factories, particularly those along the river, are required to install the “facilities” to prevent water pollution.
Ricafrente said that he would order the closure of the firm liable for the chemical spill. He likewise cited that he would look into the lapses of concerned agencies on the incident.