[In the news] OK for Aquino to void mining pact, rules CA -INQUIRER.net
OK for Aquino to void mining pact, rules CA.
By Marlon Ramos, Philippine Daily Inquirer
March 6, 2012
As the debate between environmentalists and promining groups rages, the Court of Appeals has upheld the authority of President Aquino to void the “midnight deal” then outgoing President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo entered into with a Canadian mining firm that allowed the latter to engage in large-scale mineral exploration in three towns in Palawan.
In a 12-page decision, the court dismissed for lack of merit the petition filed by McArthur Mining Inc. which questioned the decision of Mr. Aquino revoking the Financial or Technical Assistance Agreement (FTAA) the mining firm had cut with the Arroyo administration.
The FTAA, which allowed McArthur to conduct mining activities in Rizal, Bataraza and Narra towns, was signed by then Executive Secretary Leandro Mendoza on April 5, 2010, roughly one a month before the national elections.
McArthur was joined in the petition by its local partners Narra Nickel Mining and Development Corp. and Tesoro Mining and Development.
“Petitioners give us the impression that the Office of the President cannot cancel or revoke the FTAA because it is one of the contracting parties to it… We beg to disagree,” the court said in its decision dated February 28.
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