The “will he won’t he” political pantomime continues as President Aquino’s promised executive order (EO) on mining in the Philippines is further postponed. The vacuum created by inaction is being more than filled with speculation; the most recent being on whether there will be an executive order at all. While the industry lobby blasts away, many mining opponents note that even a favourable EO is unlikely to get at the root of the problems in the original 1995 Mining Act. There have been a number of recent events that prove this point. Once again the human rights violations at Xstrata’s Tampakan mine have been highlighted.