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Upland barangay chief may be sued for "vandalizing government property"

CEBU, Philippines - Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña challenged Buot-Taop barangay captain Rechie Sibla that if he wants to insist on ripping off government boards from government-owned goals and replace it with the boards of his rival Jonathan “Atan” Guardo, he will file a case against Sibla for vandalizing government property.

“If he prefers, I’ll file a case against him in court for vandalizing government property so he can explain that to the judge. Just let him challenge me and I will file,” Osmeña said yesterday.

“They’re the ones terrorizing and vandalizing the city property, there’s no doubt about it,” he said.

This, following Sibla’s accusation of harassment against the mayor and the city government for sending Squatters Prevention and Encroachment Elimination Division personnel in their barangay last Friday to remove Guardo’s boards and replace it back with government’s boards.

Sibla alleged that the SPEED team harassed him and his constituents for threatening to take away the goals if they would not permit them to remove Guardo’s boards.

Sibla said that the dilapidated boards of Osmeña were removed before because the city allegedly was slow in accommodating his request for replacement.

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“But what right does he have to rip off city government property? The goals are owned by the city, he has no right to rip off our goals and put his name on it,” Osmeña insisted.

He said that last Friday, he did not personally order the SPEED to go to the area. “Although I did not instigate it, it’s my own people who instigate it but they have a point. They’re just protecting the city property.”

“If he really wants to go that far, let the court decide,” Osmeña said. He added that he might also include Guardo in the case if Sibla would say that Guardo ordered to remove all government boards and have it replaced with his.

Osmeña earlier said that it is Guardo who is the actual terrorist and the one harassing the city government by lording over city-owned goals. — Jessica Ann R. Pareja/MEEV   (FREEMAN NEWS)

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