Byline: SECRETARY ANGELO T. REYES
IT is with great honor to be invited to this conference which brings together two of the important sectors of our society that play a major role in the management of our environment and natural resources.
The local government units have long been the DENR's partners in ensuring that future Filipinos will continue to enjoy a livable environment and continuously benefit from the country's natural resources. This has been strengthened through the DENR-DILG-LGU Joint Memorandum Circular No. 2003-01. It provides for the strengthening and institutionalization of DENR-DILG-LGU partnership on devolved and other forest management functions. To date, many municipal watersheds are now being co-managed by local government units.
For the indigenous peoples, we are proud to state that the pioneering work of the DENR from 1986 to 1997 helped lay the foundation of Republic Act No. 8371, also known as the indigenous peoples rights act. Taking the cudgels for the indigenous peoples as their flagship champion under …