The forest rangers of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will undergo a training on gun-handling and safety on December 3-5, 2019, in a bid to equip them in performing their law enforcement functions to protect the forest land in Palawan.
Aside from DENR and other agencies’ personnel, some forest rangers and forest law enforcement personnel within the neighboring provinces of Romblon, Mindoro and Marinduque are also expected to attend.
The Philippine National Police (PNP) officials will be the resource persons during the training.
Eriberto Santos, head of the Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office of the DENR-Palawan, said that DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu is expected to attend the activity with 150 participants.
He said that as a gesture of support, Palawan Governor Jose Chavez Alvarez donated 150 shotguns to the DENR to help their forest rangers and other personnel assigned in the field.
The death of forest ranger Bienvenido “Toto” Veguilla Jr., assigned in El Nido Taytay Managed Resource Protected Area (ENTMRPA) of the DENR in El Nido town, prompted Secretary Cimatu to appeal to Congress, two months ago for the creation of the DENR-Enforcement Bureau, in a bid to effectively enforce environmental laws and protect its workers who have been the vicious targets of illegal loggers and other environmental criminals.
The DENR said that with the Enforcement Bureau they could fully implement and enforce laws on environment and natural resources (ENR) with full authority to police illegal loggers and environmental violators.
“Kailangan talaga iyon para magkaroon ng police power ang ating mga personnel. Kung meron ng Enforcement Bureau ay magkakaroon na tayo ng mga Environmental Police na gagawa ng pag-demolish o pag-aresto,” Santos said.