Yamashita treasure buried in Igbaras village?

first_imgILOILO – An ongoing excavation at aprivate lot in Barangay Pasong, Igbaras town has alarmed residents. “Kontuod nga may ara, kontani damo nga mal-am ang mahambal sina,” he said. Part of the letter read: “This is inresponse to the complaint received by my office regarding the alleged treasurehunting in Barangay Pasong, Igbaras, Iloilo. We have exhausted all possiblemeans to settle the issue by calling for a dialogue with the permitee, NolyLaquihon Bayogos with permit No. CPD-THP-2019-20 dated June 01, 2019 issued bythe National Museum and signed by Angel P. Bautista, acting assistant director,chief, CPRD. However, upon discussion, the permitee refused to suspend theiractivity despite the petition of the barangay officials and residents. Thelocation is said to be at very high risk of landslide and soil erosion as perassessment of the Mines and Geosciences Bureau.” Behind an enclosure surrounding thelot, men are reportedly digging for treasures. Led by Igbaras’ Mayor Jaime Esmeralda,barangay officials of Pasong sought the help of Gov. Arthur Defensor Jr.yesterday. Some residents say the diggers arelooking for the buried gold treasures of World War 2 Japanese general TomoyukiYamashita. Yamashita was assigned to defend theJapan-colonized Philippines from the advancing Allied forces in the waningyears of World War 2. He failed to stop the Allied advance, and Japanultimately surrendered in August 1945. Before his Philippine assignment,Yamashita and his men were said to have plundered other Southeast Asiancountries that Japan attacked and/or invaded during the war and buried the lootin the Philippines. For his part, Barangay CaptainCornelio Elumba of Pasong dismissed speculations there could be Yamashitatreasures buried in his village. According to the mayor, around 10diggers have so far covered 1,000 square meters.center_img But what worries residents are thepossible adverse effects of the excavation on their village such as landslide,soil erosion and the earth caving in. As far as the municipal government ofIgbaras and barangay council of Pasong were concerned, said Esmeralda, they havenot issued any permit for treasure hunting, ground excavation or mining in thevillage. “I learned that the excavation hasbeen going on for about one and half years already beginning in 2018 before Iwas elected mayor. Residents fear this could result to soil erosion. Ninenearby households are very concerned,” said Esmeralda. According to Esmeralda, he had also writtenNational Museum of the Philippines’s head Jeremy Barns seeking informationabout the so-called permit issued to Bayogos. According to Esmeralda, the municipalpolice was also tasked to investigate but the cops were turned away and toldthat only President Rodrigo Duterte could stop the excavation. Defensor vowed to help verify theIgbaras digging at the National Museum of the Philippines. From what he had gathered, saidEsmeralda, a certain Noly Laquihon Bayogos claimed to have secured a “TreasureHunting and Disposition of Recovered Treasures Permit” from the National Museumof the Philippines purportedly signed by Angel Bautista, acting assistantdirector, chief, Cultural Properties Regulation Division of the museum. Themayor wanted this verified. He also alerted the Provincial LegalOffice and Provincial Environment and Natural Resources./PNlast_img read more

Read More »