#TooSoon—Litter found a day after Boracay’s much anticipated opening

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) on Saturday posted a photo of trash it found along Boracay on Twitter.

“A day after the #BoracayReopening, we retrieved this trash in one crevice alone of the rock formation in Station 1 of Boracay. Is this #responsibletourism?

Let’s all work together to keep Boracay clean and pristine! PLEASE RETWEET. #BetterBoracay,” the tweet read.

Boracay Island was closed off for six months to make way for its rehabilitation after President Rodrigo Duterte called it a “cesspool.”

However, litters were still found in some areas of Boracay’s beachfront after it’s reopening on October 26 despite the trash bins deployed by the authorities and the constant reminders about the strict implementation of no-littering policy to the tourists.

Plastic bags, cups and other garbage items were even seen scattered along the shoreline during the popular tourist spot’s dry run for its reopening on October 15.

According to the DENR, it is now planning to “install [high-resolution Closed Circuit TV cameras]” in public spaces in Boracay to catch littering guests.

A lesson of political will
Malacañang, meanwhile, lauded the agencies involved in Boracay’s rehabilitation. It also said that President Duterte is “pleased with what has happened” to the island.

The six-month rehabilitation “is a lesson of political will” and “a lesson of neglect, misfeasance and malfeasance by responsible persons in office,” according to Presidential Spokesperson and Chief Presidential Legal Counsel Salvador Panelo.

“The cesspool that was Boracay would not have happened if political will was exhibited by those in authority and if only officials of the island paradise, as well as the stakeholders, operated following the law and the rules and regulations of pertinent government agencies,” he said.

Ritchel Mendiola
Ritchel Mendiola

Ritchel Mendiola is a feature writer based in the Philippines. In addition to writing for Balikbayan Magazine, she is a news correspondent for Asian Journal News-Manila.

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