Hired Forest Protection Officers and Park Rangers from CENRO Kabasalan underwent Deputization Training and are now knowledgeably equipped and recognized as Deputized Environment and Natural Resources Officers (DENRO) – a first in DENR Zamboanga Peninsula.

CY 2023 Work and Financial Plan under CENRO Kabasalan, Zamboanga Sibugay specified the hiring of 13 Forest Protection Officers and 6 Park Rangers for the monitoring of forestlands within the 2nd District of Zamboanga Sibugay and the newest Protected Area in Region IX: the Naga-Kabasalan Protected Landscape and Seascape falling under the AOR of CENRO Kabasalan.

CENR Officer Dennis N. Catalan saw the vitality of the role of the hired FPOs and Park Rangers in ensuring that environmental laws are effectively enforced. The Office aspires to attain at least Zero apprehension through effective and efficient ENR law enforcement in the 2nd District of the Province.

RED Ronald Gadot affirms to this and shares the same vision with CENR Officer Catalan. Hence, the One (1) Day Orientation Seminar for Deputized Environment and Natural Resources Officers (DENRO) which was held last February 27, 2023 at the Conference Room of CENRO Kabasalan was made possible through the joint efforts of the DENR IX Regional Office Enforcement Division and CENRO Kabasalan.

The Forest Protection Officers and Park Rangers were oriented and equipped on environmental laws pertaining to Forestry, Wildlife Resources, Protected Areas, MGB Laws, and EMB Laws discussed by expert resource persons coming from the DENR Regional Office, PENRO Zamboanga Sibugay and CENRO Kabasalan. The deputization training involving the hired FPOs and Park Rangers in CENRO Kabasalan is the first in Zamboanga Peninsula making them the 1st FPOs and Park Rangers to be recognized as DENROs.

Atty. Ophelia B. Baul-Gella, the OIC-Chief of DENR IX Regional Office Enforcement Division, discussed in particular the topics on Forestry Laws, Rules and Regulations; Guidelines in the Conduct of Apprehension; DAO 97-32; DAO 2020-18; Scaling of Logs and Lumber; Salient Provisions on Rules of Procedure for Environmental Cases, and Procedure on Filing of Cases.

Michael F Dela Cruz, the OIC-Chief of the PENRO Zamboanga Sibugay Technical Services Division, discussed topics on RA 9147 (Wildlife Act); RA 11038 (eNIPAS Act of 2018); and RA 9072 (Caves and Cave Resources Act).

CENR Officer Dennis N. Catalan oriented the participants on DAO 2008-22 (DENRO Duties and Functions) and the prohibited acts & penalties on RA 9175 (Chainsaw Act of 2002) as stipulated under DAO 2003-24, PD 705 and other related forestry laws.

Engr. Nathaniel Domail, MGB embedded personnel, equipped the participants topic on Prohibited Acts & Penalties on Mining Laws and MGB MC No.2018-01 while Engrs. Carlo Deo Bue, Lourence Gail Mariano and Janzen Mari Pang, CEMU Kabasalan Personnel shared expertise on prohibited acts and penalties on EMB Laws.

March 9, 2023 marked the very awaited day for the FPOs and Park Rangers as they received their certificates and DENRO Identification Cards at the Conference room of CENRO Kabasalan signifying that they are already DENR-recognized DENROs. The awarding was led by PENRO Edgardo P. Montojo, together with CENR Officer Dennis N. Catalan, PENRO TSD Chief Michael F. Dela Cruz, PENRO Enforcement Section Chief Forester Miriam P. Licera and Deputy CENRO Reynaldo Cuaresma. PENRO Montojo encouraged the new DENROs to function diligently and to not ever abuse the authority vested upon them.

CENR Officer Dennis Catalan is very confident that the DENROs can apply the knowledge imparted to them and effectively enforce their duties and functions towards the attainment of DENR’s Vision and Mission.

DENR IX continues to encourage everyone to participate in the protection, conservation, and management of the environment and natural resources for the present and future generation in partnership with all local stakeholders, particularly the local government units in the spirit of shared responsibility.