Puentevella urged to defend city’s interest-A A +A
Saturday, August 24, 2013
BACOLOD City Councilor Dindo Ramos was surprised at the apparent change of heart of Bacolod City Mayor Monico Puentevella over the issue of the city’s takeover of the Bacolod Real Estate Development Corporation (Bredco) port.
He said, "When Puentevella was still the congressman, he had prodded us to pass the ordinance taking over the port. In fact, he also said, Puentevella had provided them with photos showing the alleged violations of Bredco of its agreement with the city to justify the takeover.”
“Now, Puentevella announced he wants to renegotiate with Bredco. He also congratulated Bredco for winning the civil case against the city for take-over ordinance passed during the old administration,” Ramos added.
As principal author of the takeover ordinance, Ramos said Puentevella should pursue the case by filing a motion for reconsideration and if needed, go all the way to the Supreme Court to settle once and for all the legal issues over the port operations.
"I am surprised at the present stand of Puentevella, Ramos said, recalling that the mayor had prodded them to pass the takeover ordinance. As chief executive of Bacolod, it is his obligation to defend this law. This law is no longer ours or theirs, it is the city’s and the mayor must defend,” Ramos stressed.
Ramos said he believes the ordinance defends the interests of the city and Puentevella should defend it.
"It took us a lot of effort to pass the ordinance with the full cooperation of the office of then Congressman Puentevella,” Ramos said, adding that “there is no one else who can file the motion for reconsideration but Puentevella himself because he now represents the city as mayor.”
Authority to renegotiate
Bacolod Councilor Caesar Distrito, on the other hand, said before Puentevella can start renegotiating with Bredco, he should ask for authority from the City Council.
He is mandated by law to seek authority from the City Council prior to it, he added.
Distrito cited Section 455 (Chief Executive; Powers, Duties and Compensation) of the Local Government Code of the Philippines which provides for the duties of the city mayor, which states that “the City Mayor shall Represent the City in all its business transactions and sign in its behalf all bonds, contracts and obligations and such other documents upon authority of the Sangguniang Panlungsod (City Council) or pursuant to law or ordinance.”
Whatever negotiations he may enter, he should first ask for an authority from the City Council and the latter will decide whether to allow him to negotiate or not.
Although it was not directly mentioned, still negotiation can be considered as a business transaction in which he will enter as representative of the City of Bacolod.
Further, the City Council had not yet received a copy of the decision of the Court. As soon as it is being transmitted to the City Council, Distrito said, he will study the matter as to what is the next legal step to take and to submit recommendations to the Council.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on August 24, 2013.