MANILA -- Senator Panfilo Lacson on Friday lauded the Department of Foreign Affairs' (DFA) decision to recall ranking Philippine envoys posted in Canada as the "right thing to do" to preserve national dignity.
"DFA Sec. (Teodoro) Locsin's move to recall our diplomats is the right thing to do under the circumstances. National dignity is part and parcel of diplomacy," Lacson said in a text message.
Canada failed to keep its promise of retrieving its trash within the May 15 deadline set by President Rodrigo R. Duterte, prompting the DFA to recall its envoys posted in the North American country.
Lacson said allowing Canada to dump their waste in the country is submitting to their "misplaced superiority."
"To allow the country to be a regular dumping ground of toxic garbage by another country, smacks of arrogance aside from the health hazards that it brings to our people," he added.
Canada on Thursday night vowed to work closely with the Philippines in coming up with a "swift resolution" so the waste it had exported to Manila could be promptly shipped.
"Canada is disappointed by this decision to recall the Philippine ambassador and consuls general. However, we will continue to closely engage with the Philippines to ensure a swift resolution of this important issue," Guillaume Bérubé, spokesperson for Global Affairs Canada, told the Philippine News Agency (PNA) in an email.
Bérubé did not indicate the earliest estimate when the containers of trash will be pulled out, but he reiterated Canada's "commitment to promptly ship and dispose of the Canadian waste."
"We remain committed to finalizing these arrangements for the return of the waste to Canada," he said, as he noted that "Canada values its deep and long-standing relationship with the Philippines."
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said the order was to persuade Ottawa to speed up the process of retrieving more than a hundred container vans containing the wastes that arrived in batches at the Port of Manila from 2013 to 2014. (PNA)