More firms cited for pollution in Manila Bay cleanup

Kori Quintos, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 19 2019 12:40 PM | Updated as of Feb 19 2019 10:04 PM

MANILA - (UPDATE 2) More commercial establishments along Manila Bay were cited for water pollution on Tuesday, as the massive cleanup of the area continued, authorities said.

The Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) started serving "cease and desist" orders to 5 establishments including Max's Restaurant UN Orosa, HengFeng Kitchenette, Jollibee Macapagal Biopolis, Lamer Catering, and Nihon Bashitei Japanese Food.

Aloha Hotel, Sarmiti Food Corp (Shawarma Snack Center) and Oriz Auto Leasing Philippines Corp will receive an "ex-parte" order or a notice to explain their violations within a 15-day period, the order dated Feb. 18 showed.

Notices of violations for water pollution will be issued to Heritage Condominium Corp, Ma. Natividad Building, Marina Square Properties Inc (Hyatt Hotel and Casino Manila), Cultural Center of the Philippines (main building and production design center), Federal Land Inc (The New Blue Wave), First Marbella Condominium Association Inc., Gold Quest Premiere Resources Inc (The Biopolis), Harrison Lodge, Libertad Tourist Development Inc (Halina Lodge/Hotel), OWWA Building, and Wellcross Freight Corp, the order stated. 

Jollibee, meanwhile, said it had already notified the LLDA that it temporarily closed its Biopolis branch last Sunday to repair a part of the store's water treatment facility and "prevent any wastewater discharge in the process."

"Our team is rushing the repair and we shall be informing the LLDA also about this soonest," Jollibee said in a statement. 

Max's Restaurant meanwhile said its Orosa branch was compliant with environmental laws as it has been using Maynilad's sewage treatment facility since 2005. 

"We look forward to resuming our operations as soon as we have re-validated our compliance to the full satisfaction of all parties involved," Max's said in a statement. 

Several businesses, including SM Prime Holdings, have pledged support to the cleanup drive. 

The rehabilitation plan was revived after President Rodrigo Duterte warned establishments along the bay to comply with environmental regulations or face closure.