Rama: Hotel better have grounds

Mechelle P. Florita, JMO (The Freeman) - April 2, 2014 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines -  Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said yesterday that Waterfront Hotel and Casino better have enough legal basis in questioning the city's sale of a lot in Barangay Lahug otherwise the move might just usher in chaos.

"They better be sure they have a leg to stand on. They better be sure they have legal basis to stand on because it may just be a cause also of a counter that will always be a consequence that one is being sued there will always be a counter," Rama said.

Waterfront has protested the sale of the 2,357 square-meter property of the city to Hotel Asia, which won the bidding at P35,000 per square meter.

The recommended floor price of the Committee on Awards was P 30,000 per square meter, but Waterfront has alleged there was no representative from the Commission on Audit during the bidding.

Waterfront alleged further that the notice of the bidding was announced two days before the public auction sale, which allegedly violated Section 79 of the State Audit Code of the Philippines. The code requires that the notice of bidding should be advertised by printed notice for not less than three consecutive days.

Rama said the city will face the challenge, quoting City Legal Officer Jerone Castillo who said earlier that the case does not have sufficient facts.

Waterfront earlier showed a long-term lease proposal with only P25,000 a month or P11.30 square per meter for 20 years.

"But if they are willing into buying it - double, especially (the) Capitol is also asking for a share… I would be very happy," Rama said.

Regional Trial Court Branch 9 Judge Alexander Acosta said Waterfront's petition will be resolved as soon as the three parties in the case will submit their written memoranda.  (FREEMAN)

BARANGAY LAHUG CEBU CITY MAYOR MICHAEL RAMA CITY CITY LEGAL OFFICER JERONE CASTILLO HOTEL ASIA JUDGE ALEXANDER ACOSTA RAMA REGIONAL TRIAL COURT BRANCH STATE AUDIT CODE OF THE PHILIPPINES WATERFRONT WATERFRONT HOTEL AND CASINO
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