More establishments sanctioned in Manila Bay rehab

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Metro Manila (CNN Philippines, February 8) — Three more establishments got sanctioned Friday as part of government efforts to rehabilitate Manila Bay.

The Laguna Lake Development Authority (LLDA) issued cease and desist orders to Makchang Korean Restaurant in Manila, and Legend Seafood Restaurant and NetWorld Hotel, both in Pasay City. The LLDA said the establishments failed to meet government standards and are now prohibited from discharging wastewater directly to Manila Bay. They will still be allowed to operate.

They join eight other establishments with cease and desist orders since January 27, when the rehabilitation of Manila Bay kicked off on orders of President Rodrigo Duterte.

In a speech on January 9, Duterte threatened to close down restaurants near the Manila Bay without proper water treatment systems, following his order to rehabilitate the polluted body of water. On January 22, the Manila Zoo – another Manila landmark – was ordered temporarily closed by city authorities.

Meanwhile, the LLDA in a February 6 order also recommended the issuance of notices of violation to the following: Harbour View Square and China Oceanis Inc. Philippines - Manila Ocean Park in Manila, and SM Development Corp.'s Breeze Residences, Sofitel Philippine Plaza, Philippine International Convention Center, Midas Hotel and Casino, Carwash by Benjas, Sogo Hotel, and Harrison Mansion, all in Pasay City.

Ex-parte orders, which require the companies to explain their supposed violations, will also be sent to San Andres Public Market and Malate Royale Development Corp. - Malate Crown Plaza Condominium in Manila, and Center for International Trade Exposition Center, Metroescapes Corp. - Seascape Village and Antel Seaview Towers Condominium in Pasay City.

It is not immediately known if the warnings have been issued to the said companies.

The government is trying to stop sources of pollution as it eyes Manila Bay to have swimmable beaches by this year. Levels of coliform, a group of harmful bacteria found in human and animal feces, have gone down in some parts of Manila Bay following the start of the government's rehabilitation drive, Environment Undersecretary Sherwin Rigor told CNN Philippines on Thursday.

READ: Coliform levels down in parts of Manila Bay after start of rehab