Capitol may lose right to present evidence-A A +A
Wednesday, March 20, 2013
THE Cebu Provincial Government may lose its right to present evidence in the civil suit filed by lot successors who seek to recover a 4,741-square-meter lot allegedly registered under Capitol’s name.
This came after Judge Simeon Dumdum, Jr. declared in default Assistant Provincial Attorney Richie Capahi for his failure to appear during the pretrial conference of the case on Feb. 19.
With this, Dumdum, presiding judge of the Regional Trial Court Branch 7, ruled that lawyer Richard Bauzon, counsel for the petitioners, may present their evidence before lawyer Nicole Marie Cimafranca-Go, the judge’s clerk of court.
But Capahi filed yesterday a motion for reconsideration and apologized to Judge Dumdum and to the petitioners’ counsel for the inconvenience he might have caused because of his absence during the case conference.
“Because of other duties and responsibilities and pressure of work, the scheduled pre-trial conference was inadvertently not put in defendant’s calendar of cases,” Capahi said in his pleading.
Capitol earlier expressed willingness to amicably settle the case, as it maintained that Lot 925-A in Barangay Lahug is registered under Cebu City’s name, and not the Province’s.
The Provincial Government is seeking the dismissal of the complaint since the petitioners, who are heirs of the late Francisco Almario and wife Felipa Zafra, have no cause of action.
The complaint was baseless, said Capahi, since Lot 925-A was not transferred to the Province’s name.
The civil case for nullification of deed of exchange was filed in October last year by the lot successors against Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia.
The lot successors are represented by their attorney-in-fact Casiano Almario Jr.
The four-page complaint prepared by lawyer Bauzon states that Almario and Zafra owned Lot 925, comprising of four hectares along Gorordo Ave. in Barangay Lahug.
Lot 925 was later subdivided into several parcels of land, among them Lot 925-A, which has an area of 4,741 square meters.
In March 1953, then governor Sergio Osmeña and the couple’s heirs entered into a deed of exchange involving the parcels of lands.
In the legal document, the Province swapped its three parcels of lot with that of the couple’s Lot 925-A.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on March 20, 2013.