The Department of Environment and Natural Resources will gather local officials and tourism stakeholders for a dialogue on the proposed temporary closure of Mararison Island in Culasi, Antique on Oct. 4, 2018. (Photo by PIO Antique)

SAN JOSE DE BUENAVISTA, Antique – The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) will gather stakeholders from the town of Culasi to discuss the proposed temporary closure of the Mararison Island for a clean-up activity on October 4, Governor Rhodora Cadiao said Monday.

In an interview, Cadiao said the consultation will be held in Culasi where Mararison is located to tap its local government officials and stakeholders in addressing the problem.

The consultation will be facilitated by Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Andres Untal.

“Please help save our island,” said Cadiao, who announced last week the planned closure.

The plan to temporarily close the island seeks to give way to the much needed cleanup and for motorboats plying from Lipata Port to Mararison to work on their registration with the Maritime Industry Authority.

Culasi Mayor Jose Jeffrey Lomugdang, however, denied that the sanitation in the island was neglected because they have a solid waste management program in the white sand island.

He also questioned why Mararison Island is being singled out for temporary closure.

Meanwhile, Cadio urged everyone to “be part of the solution and not the problem”.

The governor said Mararison is an option for other tourists who could not go to Boracay Island because of the plan to limit the number of visitors when it reopens on October 26.

“Mararison is one of the best tourism attractions in Antique,” she added. (PNA)