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LCP asked to comment on "new cities" motion

CEBU, Philippines - The Supreme Court has required the League of Cities of the Philippines to respond to the motion for reconsideration and pleading of the 16 new cities, asking chief justice Reynato Puno and Justice Antonio Eduardo Nachura to participate in the voting.

In a resolution dated September 29, 2009, the Supreme Court en banc has asked the LCP “to comment” on the motion and pleading within 10 days after the receipt of the notice.

The motion was filed by the 16 cities through their lawyer, former solicitor general Estelito Mendoza, last July 6, 2009, asking the High Tribunal to reconsider its November, 18, 2008 main decision annulling all 16 cityhood laws because of their unconstitutionality. This is the third motion for reconsideration filed by the 16 cities after the first two motions and other pleadings in connection with the main decision were all rejected by the Supreme Court en banc.

The last denial of their motion was contained in a six-page resolution dated June 2, 2009, wherein the Supreme Court en banc voted 6-6. A tie vote for a motion is always favorable to the winning party, which is the LCP.

The LCP has asked the Supreme Court to annul the cityhood laws that convert 16 towns, including Bogo, Carcar and Naga in Cebu, into new cities saying that they did not meet the P100-million income requirement and there was allegedly railroading in their conversion into cities which was disadvantageous to the existing cities as it would affect their IRA shares, among other reasons.

With the latest resolution from the SC, Naga City Mayor Valdemar Chiong said it may mean a good start for them to work on further for the reversal of that November 18, 2008 ruling, which although it is not yet final and executory had resulted to the reduction of their IRA shares.

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In their separate urgent motion dated September 22, the 16 cities had also asked that Puno and Nachura should also participate in the voting, since they have taken no part of from the start. The Supreme Court has also taken cognizance of this motion. — Liv G. Campo/WAB    NLQ   (FREEMAN NEWS)


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