Paradise at a Loss


Isla Boracay, an international tourist destination, was the center of controversy for some time this year after the Department of Environment and Narutal Resources (DENR) reported that’s its waters are contaminated with coliforms, thus making it unsafe for swimming or any contact sports.

DENR’s report earned criticisms from various sectors, especially from the tourism department which assured the public that the waters off Boracay was safe for swimming as demonstrated by Tourism Secretary Mina Gabor.

Meanwhile, after checking all records at the Cebu district hospital and other health centers, no water-borne diseases or skin infections as brought about by the alleged contamination in the months of May and June was found.

In a House committee on tourism hearing held in Boracay, medical experts said that coliform microorganisms are not deadly and are found also in human bodies. They noted that it is normal for individuals to have coliform bacteria without manifesting signs of tyohoid and cholera.

To validate the safety of waters around the Isla Boracay, a water-sampling test was conducted by an inter-agency team made up of the DENR, DOH, Department of Tourism, Department of Science and Technology,a dnt eh Dames and Moor, a private firm.