School submits draft deal for City’s payment of debt

THE Asian College of Technology International Education Foundation Inc. (ACTIEF) has submitted to the Cebu City Government a draft compromise agreement for the payment of P135 million that the City Government owes to the school.

City Legal Officer Joseph Bernaldez said they are now reviewing the compromise agreement to make sure it is not disadvantageous to the City.

“The City Legal Office was tasked to review and make some recommendations or changes and amendments as the case maybe. We can probably come up with a definitive recommendation within two weeks,” he said.

Based on his initial assessment to the proposed compromise agreement, Bernaldez said it will surely benefit the City.

He said that if the City will not settle immediately its dues, it will incur bigger increase in the interest rate.

The P135 million that the City owes ACTIEF represents the school fees the scholars incurred beginning on the second semester of school year 2014 to 2015.

The City Council has recently authorized Mayor Tomas Osmeña to enter into a compromise agreement with ACTIEF to settle the case that the City filed against the school.

The previous administration had withheld the payment pending a petition for declaratory relief that the City filed against ACTIEF in court.

The City filed the civil petition to determine if the law would allow it to pay the school after the anti-graft office found Cebu City South District Rep. Rodrigo Abellanosa, then a city councilor, liable for conflict of interest.

Abellanosa was the trustee and president of ACTIEF when the school entered into an agreement with the City for the scholarship program in 2011.

The ombudsman filed charges against Abellanosa before the Sandiganbayan, but he was later cleared when it granted last January his motion to quash the information, saying the facts in the case do not constitute an offense.

The case caused prejudice to the city scholars who studied to ACTIEF after the release of their credentials were put on hold pending the resolution of the case. (RVC)
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