April 22, 2024

TABUK CITY, Kalinga – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources-Cordillera recently deputized eight wildlife enforcement officers in the province.

Four of them were assigned to the Community Environment and Natural Resources Office of Tabuk City and Pinukpuk.

The wildlife enforcement officers will have the full authority to seize illegally traded wildlife and to arrest without warrant violators of Republic Act 9147 or the Wildlife Resources Conservation and Protection Act subject to laws, rules, and regulations on arrest and detention.

The wildlife enforcement officers are also tasked to deliver within reasonable time to the nearest environment office for custody all confiscated wildlife, their parts, by-products and/or derivatives, as well as tools, equipment, and conveyances used in the commission of the crime.

Under RA 9147, the DENR secretary or his authorized representative deputizes wildlife enforcement officers from non-government organizations, citizens groups, community organizations, and other volunteers who have undergone the necessary training for this purpose.

Members of the Philippine National Police, Armed Forces of the Philippines, and other law enforcement agencies can also be designated as wildlife enforcement officers.

Eddie Gaayon, Kalinga Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Office chief on Monitoring and Enforcement Section, said deputizing individual volunteers from the place is effective since they are familiar with the wildlife habitat.

Gaayon said the eight deputized wildlife enforcement officers were oriented of their duties and functions including helping in the protection of wildlife habitat from deforestation, fire, and other destructions.

The customary imong and other traditional means of protecting biodiversity were also imparted.

The wildlife enforcement officers were also educated on paniyaw, one of the i-Kalingas core values that cover taboos linked to environment, flora, and fauna. – Peter Balocnit