BAGUIO City Mayor Maurico Domogan said pronouncements by the local council over management of the convention center have to be taken positively.
The local council last week has called on a change of management of the Baguio Convention Center after flaws on its operation were revealed in a Commission on Audit report putting leadership of City Tourism Officer Benedicto Alhambra to the test.
“This is a wakeup call for Benny,” Domogan said.
The mayor said the calls for the council to confirm contracts of leases of the BCC are within their right and jurisdiction.
“Yes, the contracts must be presented to them,” added the mayor.
The council has requested the mayor to make public contracts of all leases for the body to confirm or deny existing occupants of the BCC.
Domogan said he has not been furnished with any contract to date.
In March, Margie Bongait, Audit Team Leader of COA Baguio, Shalymar Garcia, and Supervising Auditor of COA-Baguio reported flaws in the management as well as operations of the BCC.
The Bongait report revealed contracts between the city government and leaseholders have not been authorized by the local council, which is a requirement to make valid all agreements in the area.
Alhambra took the reins in management of the BCC in 2004 as an added responsibility to his designation as tourism officer, but by law, the BCC is to be managed by the City Administrator’s office.
In 2004, the city used its P50 million share from BCDA to pay the down payment for the acquisition of the property but the previous city administrations failed to work on it until 2012 when the city used up a total of P317 million to fully pay its remaining obligations and interests to allow the local government to eventually own the property.