Aboitiz subsidiary supports fisherfolk
LEANDER C. DOMINGO
The Manila Times
SOME 100 coastal livelihood packages were given to two fishing communities in Maco, Davao de Oro, to help them sustain their primary source of income, according to the Aboitiz Power Corp. (AboitizPower). Jannelle Jacinto, AboitizPower Corporate Branding and Communication unit chief, said the company’s subsidiary Therma Marine Inc. (TMI) and the Aboitiz Foundation (AFI) recently donated these livelihood packages to Barangay San Roque and Barangay San Juan, including fishing nets, diving goggles, nylon and other fishing supplies. According to Jacinto, TMI operates two 100-megawatt oil-fired power barges in Maco town in Davao de Oro (Mobile 1) and Nasipit town in Agusan del Norte (Mobile 2). Wilfredo Vegafria, head of the San Roque fisherfolk, said they are thankful to Therma Marine for the donation. “This will really help us with our day-to-day expenses. We will protect the environment, too, as much as we can,” Vegafria added. He said the new fishing materials benefit almost 100 fisherfolk whose income comes only from the sea. San Roque barangay chairman Mario Sapilan said the TMI has become an integral part of San Roque village for over 12 years now. “I am happy to say that we have been partners for many projects that were not only beneficial for our community but also promote the common good,” Sapilan noted. Jacinto said it is important for the fisherfolk as custodians of the sea to have proper fishing equipment to help them exercise and maintain sustainable fishing practices. TMI and AFI also donated two buoys to the municipality of Maco in addition to the livelihood assistance. Jacinto explained that the buoys are placed to ensure that no harmful human activity takes place within the municipality’s marine protected area (MPA), which measures around five hectares. MPAs are spaces where human activities are constantly monitored and regulated for species conservation and natural resource management. Allan Olaguer, head of Maco municipal environment and natural resources office, said they are delighted to receive items that protect their environment in the town. “We will make sure that we continue to do our part for our marine environment,” Olaguer added.