In line with the celebration of the 2022 World Wildlife Day, the DENR Central Visayas together with the City Government of Lapulapu unveiled the Ramsar Site Marker and blessing of the newly completed viewing deck and board walk at the Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary (OIWS) protected area.
DENR Assistant Secretary for Field Operations- Visayas Asec. Arleigh Adorable together with the DENR7 officials lead by OIC RED Paquito Melicor, Jr., Asst. Regional Director for Technical Services ARD Charlie Fabre, Cebu PENR Officer Jose Cleo Cary Colis, Cebu City CENR Officer Raul Pasoc, and the City Government of Lapulapu officials lead by Honorable Mayor Junard Ahong Chan and San Vicente Brgy Captain Honorable Cyrus Eyas unveiled the Ramsar Site Marker and Rev. Fr. Edgar Lumarda parish priest of San Vicente lead the blessing ceremony with the key officials.
The OIWS is identified as a Key Biodiversity Area (KBA 84), an important Bird Area (PH609) and a Conservation Priority Area (CPA 104). It is the first in the Philippines to be declared under Ramsar Convention as a Wetland of International Importance on November 8, 1994 (Ramsar Site No.656). It provides habitat for significant numbers of migratory waterbirds, where over 10,000 shorebirds have been recorded at one time with total numbers approaching 50,000 (www.ramsar.org
) and on June 22, 2018, Republic Act 11038 was enacted, which included Olango Island Wildlife Sanctuary (OIWS) as a Protected Area within the classification of National Park.
The City Government of Lapulapu Mayor, Honorable Junard "Ahong" Chan graced the event and gave reminders to Olangohanons, he said that the City of Lapulapu is blessed because it is a favorable stopover for tourists both local and international, "We need to intensify the conservation and protection of Olango Island since it became an ecotourism destination in Cebu, palambuon pa gyud nato og maayu ang Olango!" Chan emphasized.