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CBCP urges people to boycott Petron

September 25, 2006

By Ronilo L. Pamonag
The News Today, Sept. 25, 2006

WHILE local officials backtracked on their plan to boycott products of Petron Corporation, a Catholic priest who is highly vocal on social issues is urging consumers to boycott the giant oil company.

“It would seem to us that nothing has been done,” Msgr. Meliton Oso, director of the Jaro Social Action Center, said on Saturday, referring to the oil spill.

Oso, who writes for church publication Candlelight, said that he will call on consumers to boycott Petron starting today, when his new column will be published.

“In my second column which will come out tomorrow, I am urging everyone in Iloilo to join me in boycotting Petron until they retrieve or recover M/T Solar 1 from the bottoms of the sea,” Oso said in a press conference at the Archbishop’s Palace.

Oso said that he has already “registered my own simple attempt to boycott Petron” in an earlier column.

Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) president, Jaro Archbishop Angel Lagdameo expressed support for Oso’s call to boycott the oil refiner.

“I am inclined to agree with that (boycott),” said Lagdameo, who was also present during the press conference.

He said that boycotting Petron products is but one way of forcing the oil giant to deal with the problem.

Lagdameo said that Petron Corporation and Sunshine Maritime Development Corporation, the owner of the sunken tanker, must offload the remaining oil and refloat Solar 1.

Petron and SMDC, he added, must be united in addressing the oil spill.

Oso said that they will be forming a multi-sectoral group that would look for ways to force Petron to retrieve the remaining industrial oil from the tankers containers.

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