Guadalupe lot owner agrees to deferment of demolition

May B. Miasco/NSA (The Freeman) - October 20, 2015 - 10:00am

CEBU, Philippines - The owner of a private lot in Guadalupe, Cebu City has concurred with the occupants’ plea to have the court-ordered demolition of their houses, which was supposedly enforced last Monday, postponed.

The 42 families occupying Lito Pajang’s lot in Sitio Esko-Englis have agreed to vacate the area and voluntarily remove their houses on November 30, or 40 days from now.

 “Nahangyo nato si Atty. (Makilito) Mahinay through his representative of a certain Lito Pajang nga i-defer ang pagpadayon sa demolition… Atong gihangyo sad ang mga residente nga maghimo og undertaking nga unya na sa November 30 ang ilang pagdemolish nga voluntary ang himoon,” Acting Mayor Edgardo Labella told reporters yesterday.

The families earlier requested to remain in the lot until March next year, but this has been considered “moot and academic,” Labella said, since the lot owner argued.

“Lisod man sad g’yud kun atong ipugos tungod kay naa may balaud. We are governed by the rule of law unya naa man sa’y katungod ang tag-iya; lisod man sad kun imong i-overstep,” he said.

Together with Labella, Mayor Michale Rama, before flying to Japan for a speaking engagement with other Asian countries, rushed to the barangay on Monday to intervene after the residents sought help.

The scheduled demolition was halted late in the morning, although 10 houses have been damaged already. Owners of these houses were temporarily houses at the barangay complex. All 42 affected families will be provided with P10,000 cash assistance as per Rama’s instruction, said Labella.

In the meantime, Labella instructed the Division for the Welfare of the Urban Poor to work fast on a “habitable” relocation site for the families.

The city is eyeing the newly-acquired property in Barangay Quiot Pardo to be developed into a socialized housing site.

“We are advising DWUP nga kinahanglan andamon jud na ang relocation site, not just an ordinary relocation site but that is fitting with human consideration,” said Labella.

DWUP head lawyer Collin Rosell said they will start the development plan in Barangay Quiot Pardo this week after conducting an onsite ocular inspection in the hectare-wide lot.

 “Aron nga maka-proceed ang site development, we will do it at the soonest possible time… Start of this week since we are running out of time,” he said.

He said they are planning to build bunkhouses within the area to accommodate the families temporarily while the development plan will proceed.

“We still need to do a site development in the area within the short period to accommodate them but basically, we will be pursuing the total site development in the area while we will designate a portion where we can place them for a temporary staging area,” he said.

Rosell said they are planning to adopt the three-leveled low-rise buildings scheme.

Moreover, City Councilor Alvin Dizon, commenting on Rama’s intervention in the eviction case, appealed to the mayor’s administration that there should be “no political consideration in helping the urban poor” families.

 “I wish the service or help being provided by the city is not selective. The city should help all of the families that have problems concerning eviction. It should not be discriminatory in assisting only the identified Team Rama community,” said Dizon, who is affiliated to Rama’s rival camp, Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan. — (FREEMAN)

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