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2 Lenten sites filled with trash

By CHITO CHAVEZ

A toxic watchdog heavily criticized the flocks of parishioners trooping to two Lenten pilgrimage sites outside Metro Manila for leaving behind tracks of litter which they dumped while trekking to their religious journey.

EcoWaste Coalition expressed aghast over the unrestrained acts of littering that emitted stench in the surroundings of the Our Lady of Peace Cathedral in Antipolo City, Rizal Province and the Our Lady of Lourdes Grotto in San Jose del Monte City in Bulacan.

In the early morning of Good Friday, the group’s Basura Patrollers went to these pilgrim sites to check on the garbage situation following the penitential pilgrimage that attracted millions of devotees from the National Capital Region and nearby provinces.

Photos of the littered sites can be viewed at the EcoWaste Coalition’s blog.

“We regret that the lack of discipline in the proper management of discards has again marred the penitential pilgrimage that many Filipinos do to atone for past mistakes and shortcomings,” stated Aileen Lucero, National Coordinator, EcoWaste Coalition.

“The roads leading to the holy sites, particularly the long expanse of Ortigas Avenue Extension leading to the shrine of the venerated image of the Virgin of Antipolo, were littered with candy, snack and fast food wrappers, plastic bags and bottles, and cigarette filters,” she added.

Lucero said the situation could have gone worse if not for the hundreds of street sweepers deployed by the local government units of Pasig, Cainta, Taytay, and Antipolo who worked around the clock to clean the streets of trash.

“The informal waste pickers also contributed to reducing the volume of trash to be hauled by removing recyclable materials to be sold to junk shops,” she added.

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