The Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), together with implementing partners, recently witnessed the launching of the Illegal Wildlife Trade (IWT) project in the cities of Butuan and Cebu on May 30-31, 2019 and June 13-14, 2019, respectively.
More than 170 personnel from DENR regional offices, key law enforcement agencies (police, justice, customs, ports, maritime security, agriculture, and fisheries), civil society organizations, the private sector, and the Asian Development Bank (ADB), participated in the said event.
Aside from the festivity, speakers discussed the state of IWT and law enforcement in the Philippines, and presented the logical framework of the project in the context of Caraga and Central Visayas regions. Consultation with stakeholders on the proposed revisions of the 17-year Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act of 2001 (RA 9147) was also made.
DENR-Caraga Regional Executive Director Felix Alicer and DENR Assistant Secretary for Staff Bureaus Ricardo Calderon both recognized that law enforcement and other government agencies, local government units (LGUs), academes, development partners, and local communities need to work together to combat IWT. DENR-Region 7 Assistant Director Eduardo Inting shared similar view. (IWT/ Mary Jean Caleda)