The Department of Environment and Natural Resources has appealed to millions of Filipinos who will pay homage to their departed loved ones to make the observance of “Undas” more meaningful by keeping memorial parks and public cemeteries “waste-free.”
“We call on those who will pay respect for their dead to also respect the place of their burial by not making a dump site out of graveyards during their visit,” DENR Secretary Ramon J.P. Paje said.
DENR noted that the Metropolitan Manila Development Authority had collected almost 140 truckloads of garbage from various cemeteries in Metro Manila during the observance of All Saints’ and All Souls’ Days last year.
Paje called on parents to remind their children who plan to go trick-or-treating on Halloween to discard their candy wrappers properly.
The DENR chief also urged local government units to strictly implement the provisions of Republic Act No. 9003, or the Ecological Solid Waste Management Act, to reduce the amount of trash gathered from graveyards and minimize wastes that go into landfills.
“It is high time we penalized litterbugs by imposing fines or making them render community service,” Paje said. (Ellalyn B. de Vera)