“We have received a copy of the letter of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) dated 23 September 2016 enumerating its major audit findings last 27 September 2016. Pending receipt of the full report to be issued by the DENR, we can only surmise on alleged deficiencies or violations.
Based on our review, the general audit findings are defensible and can be reversed. It appears that there may have been some Unintended Oversight in the Audit since there are matters which are yet to be acted upon by the DENR, such as (1) the offer to provide PhP30,000,000 for the implementation of the three million tree planting program; (2) application for Discharge Permits; and (3) request for approval of the Environmental Protection and Enhancement Program (EPEP) and Final Mine Rehabilitation and/or Decommissioning Plan (FMRDP). We are confident that a review of the documents submitted by MMDC will reverse the unwarranted findings.
With regard to the Watershed Issue, as far as we are aware this has already been resolved. We emphasize that Presidential Proclamation No. 1747 issued on 2009 is subsequent to MMDC’s MPSA executed on June 19, 1992. In fact, Proclamation No. 1747 in itself recognizes prior rights of contract holders; thus, MMDC is allowed to operate in the area.
With respect to the pictures shown by the DENR during its press conference last 27 September 2016, this will require validation by identification of exact location in our mine property by the DENR. As far as we are aware, we are fully compliant and have not received any notice of environmental violation.
We are proud of our mine. We invite inspection thereof so we can demonstrate our environmental compliance by showing the clean waters on our rivers, causeways and berthing area. We note that even MGB observed, in one of its reports, that there are women washing in our rivers and children swimming in our waters. Thus, we assure our Shareholders and Stakeholders, including our Buyers, Customers and Surrounding Communities that we are compliant and we have every intention to comply with laws and regulations to uphold the mandate of President Rodrigo R. Duterte and Secretary Regina L. Lopez to engage in responsible mining.”