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Cebu News

Removal of houses at cemetery moved

The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines - The removal of at least 40 illegal structures in front of the Roman Catholic Cemetery known as Doña Pepang Cemetery did not push through yesterday because the relocation site in Barangay Lorega San Miguel is not ready yet.

“Ang atong giagad is ang proseso kun kanus-a i-remove ang mga structures kay kina-hanglan mana sila makabalhin sa relocation site sa Barangay Lorega. So, atong gi-schedule that no later than Monday, makahibaw na sila diretso sa fix nila nga balhinanan. From then on, diretso na ang balhin-balhin,” said Collin Rosell, chief of Cebu City’s Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor.

Rosell said he met with the affected families last Tuesday afternoon after the court dismissed the petition of former mayor Tomas Osmeña for the court to stop the city from destroying the cemetery and from demolishing the houses of the families there.

The city government plans to convert the 9,282-square meter cemetery, situated along M.J. Cuenco Avenue, into a he-ritage park. The cemetery was owned previously by the Archdiocese of Cebu but was swapped with a city-owned lot in Barangay Pasil.

The city government entered into an agreement with the Archdiocese of Cebu to convert the cemetery into a park.

On July 14, 2015, the city served a 10-day notice for the families to vacate the cemetery premises, particularly those who built structures on both sides of the chapel in Barangays Carreta and Tejero.

Rosell said all families will be accommodated at the relocation site. He said his office is still screening the families to determine which ones are qua-lified for the city’s socialized housing program.

“Kun naay ma-screen nga wala’y labot kay una kun naa silay yuta, naay balay, maayo og pagpanginabuhi, naay tendency nga dili gyud maka-avail sa social housing program,” he said.

“Karon pud, nagsukod pa ang atong mga tao didto sa ilang tugkaran kay kun unsa kadako sa area sa ilang site, medyo pare-pareha pud sa ilang balhinan,” he said.

RECONSIDERATION

Yesterday, Osmeña asked the court to reconsider its ruling and to stop the demolition on Monday.

Osmeña told the press he can feel the sentiments of the families.

“People are afraid. Who will be going to stand for them? I have few demolitions (referring to his administration) but they were given relocation site,” he said.

He said he is also fighting for his father’s property – the Osmeña Mausoleum, which is located at the cemetery.

The affected residents told the court they have been occupying the place for a long time now and, in fact, paid rental to the Catholic Church.

Their lawyer, Benjamin Militar, then argues that the occupation is legal and cannot be called nuisance.

“A TRO be issued immediately to prevent the enforcement of the Notice to Vacate mentioned in both petitions, which would allow the city of Cebu through the newly impleaded City Official Probe chief Raque Arce to evict prospective intervenors and demolish their homes,” the motion reads.

Regional Trial Court Judge Alexander Acosta has directed the city, including Arce, to submit their comment within five days from receipt of the order. — /JMO (FREEMAN)

 

 

ACIRC

ARCHDIOCESE OF CEBU

ATILDE

BARANGAY LOREGA

BARANGAY LOREGA SAN MIGUEL

BARANGAY PASIL

BARANGAYS CARRETA AND TEJERO

BENJAMIN MILITAR

CEMETERY

CITY

OSME

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