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A Guimaras fisherman’s ‘personal’ account of the oil spill

August 31, 2006

‘I have no other place to go’

By Rodolfo Galuna

MY name is Rodolfo Galuna and I am 52 years old. I am a fisherman and live in the village of Citio Alman Sur in the south of Guimaras that was affected badly by the oil. I came here 12 years ago and built this house right on the shore. My wife Susana and I have six children, they all go to school, the eldest is in second grade high school. I have three boats. I built them myself, I need 15 days to make an outrigger boat.

12 nets I have. The biggest is 6 feet high and 300 feet long. I go fishing twice a day: from 3 o’clock in the morning until noon and from 2 pm to 5 pm. Sometimes I go as far as five miles off shore. On good days I catch more than six kilogrammes of fish, on bad days only one. I don’t sell the fish, it’s only for my family.

On Friday, 12 August, I was walking down to the shore from my house when suddenly it was slippery under my feet. I looked down and saw black sludge gushing between my toes. I knew it was oil. Then I looked up and saw all the mangroves were black up to the waterline. I tried to stop the oil from coming, but it didn’t work. My whole backyard is full of oil.

(For the full story, click Greenpeace.)

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