Columban Fr. Michael Gormly has been monitoring the arrival of Australian mining companies to the Philippines. It worries him that the local people are not really being consulted. Disaster and death are the consequences! Here he tells us of his efforts.
From mid 1996 my Columban colleagues in the Philippines began to contact me with a growing concern at the arrival of Australian based companies seeking mining concession in ecologically sensitive areas –named in many cases as ancestral domains of tribal people. The transnational quest for mineral wealth became an issue for joint consideration in both countries. We were challenged to face the core issue about what can be done when powerful political, commercial and technical forces threaten a powerless community of the poor.