Legal tussle cancels games-A A +A
Thursday, September 19, 2013
THE Cebu Coliseum turned host to a legal debate, which resulted in the cancellation of the high school semifinal games of the 2013 Cebu Schools Athletic Foundation Inc. (Cesafi) basketball tournament yesterday.
This came after the parents of Scott Aying of the University of San Carlos (USC) Baby Warriors managed to secure a temporary restraining order (TRO) from the court that stated to allow the player to play for 20 days starting yesterday.
Cesafi commissioner Felix Tiukinhoy Jr. found it defective as the order was dated Sept. 16, 2013 and not Sept. 18, 2013.
“If the date of this TRO is Sept. 18, 2013, then I have no choice but to allow Aying to play. But since this is dated Sept. 16, 2013, I would not allow him to play. And I am willing to go to prison because of my actions,” Tiukinhoy said, pointing at the TRO issued by judge Simeon Dumdum Jr. of RTC Branch 7.
It was delivered by court server Fritz Mejia.
Aying’s lawyer Donato Gonzales said that it was just a typographical error that can be corrected by a counter-signature.
But deputy commissioner Marvin Pañares was not sold out by the idea of countersigning.
“It would take a motion, a pleading in order to correct typographical errors.
(Countersigning) can’t be done. It’s improper. This is a legal document that needs a legal process not just by a counter-signature,” Panares said.
The exchange of ideas went back and forth, and Tiukinhoy insisted that he will not allow Aying to play because of the erroneous date.
Judge Dumdum’s order mandated a status quo until the issue will be resolved, but followed it with an additional clause ordering the Cesafi to allow Aying to play for 20 days until the issue, on his eligibility will be ruled by the court.
“In addition, this order stated a status quo, which in our interpretation is the present happening, where Aying was not allowed to play,” Panares added.
However, Gonzales insisted that the status quo should be observed prior to the disqualification of Aying, when the screening committee gave their stamp of approval to allow the player to play, before it was overturned last Aug. 2.
At 2 p.m. yesterday, the two sides were called to an oral argument at the sala of Judge Dumdum, and according to Tiukinhoy, the judge told them that he could not issue a TRO yet since he needed to study the documents.
However, he was surprised to learn that an hour after their meeting, Dumdum issued a TRO, only an erroneous one.
Last Friday, Aying’s parents Danilo and Avah Michell asked the courts through their lawyer for a temporary restraining order and issuance of a preliminary mandatory injunction with damages that would allow the 15-year-old cager to play with the Baby Warriors starting in the second round of the semifinal round.
Named respondents by the Ayings were Cesafi president Fr. Manny Uy, Tiukinhoy and his deputies Danny Duran and Dioscoro Himotas who were also members of the screening committee.
However, it was only last Monday that the case was raffled to the sala of judge Dumdum, who scheduled the mandatory oral argument at 2 p.m. yesterday.
The debate was only settled after UC dean of law Baldomero Estenzo arrived that Tiukinhoy came up with the decision to cancel the game and rescheduled it on Friday, including the UV-SHS-AdC game.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on September 19, 2013.