The Archbishop of Goa, Filipe Neri Ferrão, at the Annual Civic Reception on the occasion of Christmas (at Archbishop’s House, 28.12.2016) in his address highlighted Goa’s mining- related corruption and weak governance.
The extract from his speech as follows:-
Our beloved Pope Francis says: “The earth is essentially a shared inheritance, whose fruits are meant to benefit everyone.” He further says: “Each community can take from the bounty of the earth whatever it needs for subsistence, but it also has the duty to protect the earth and to ensure its fruitfulness for the coming generations.” The Pope is referring to the principle of inter-generational equity, which the Supreme Court of India has made into a law to be followed in the Goa mining case that it heard in 2012-14.
We are trustees of our land holdings. It is our solemn duty to ensure that the value of the land is passed on to our children and future generations. Only then may we enjoy the fruits, shared equally. All generations and all within a generation would benefit equally. This would truly embody the central message of most religions, “treat others as you would want to be treated yourself.”
But what we see is an extensive environmental and social damage to Goa, which has generated rampant corruption and even weakened governance. It has been an assault on our community and on our natural wealth. More distressingly, it has been a loss to our children and to our future generations. Are we not answerable to them? Or are they going to remember us as an irresponsible generation that has squandered natural wealth for the benefit of a few?
It is for this and other reasons that the Church takes upon herself, all in the name of genuine service to human beings and to the land, the task of guiding her members in the process of electing the right kind of individuals to the local and national government. Elections to the Legislative Assembly of the State are approaching and the Church Leadership in Goa will take up once again this duty-bound task.
Read the full speech here