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DENR: Damaged documents in Binondo fire are just backup files

The Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) assured the public that records are safe, even as a Monday morning fire inside the Land Management Bureau (LMB) office in Binondo damaged several documents.

“While land records in the building have been damaged, these only serve as backup of documents in the regional offices,” DENR Undersecretary Benny Antiporda said in a press briefing on Monday.

“As of the moment, siguro magkaroon man ng problema (if there would be problems), it would be minimal.  So nothing to worry about dahil intact ang records natin sa regional offices,” he added.


The DENR official said that there were no injuries or casualties among the LMB employees. However, DENR’s initial estimate of damages amounted to P100 million.

“Initial cost of damage has been estimated at P100 million due to high-tech gadgets the bureau had recently purchased for the digitization of land records,” Antiporda said.

The DENR said in a statement that LMB’s main functions are “recommending policies and programs for the efficient and effective administration, surveys, management” and “disposition of alienable and disposable lands of the public domain and other lands outside the responsibilities of other government agencies.”

“Ang problema lang natin dito (Our problem here) is we will go back to zero (digitalization of documents),” Antiporda said.

Antiporda added that DENR Secretary Roy Cimatu created a committee, which will be headed by Undersecretary Ernesto Adobo Jr., to assess the damage to other important documents.

The DENR will open a help desk at the Central Office in Quezon City to entertain concerns about the lost LMB documents. In the coming days, the department will also find a temporary office for the bureau. /ee


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