Sunday, May 26, 2019

Busay chief asks court to reverse case dismissal

BUSAY Barangay Captain Amilo Lopez has asked the court to reverse its order dismissing the complaint he filed over the P18-billion Kawit Island development in the South Road Properties (SRP) in Cebu City.

In his motion for reconsi-deration, Lopez said he did not commit violations on grounds cited by the court in its Jan. 29 decision dismissing the case.

When sought for comment, City lawyer Bernard Inocentes Garcia said there is nothing new in the arguments presented by Lopez in his motion.

“There’s nothing new in the motion for reconsideration. It’s a rehash of old arguments, which the court has already ruled upon in its dismissal order,” Garcia said.

Lopez said he did not violate the forum shopping rule as issues presented in his case are distinct from the issues raised in the complaint that suspended Councilor Jose Daluz III and seven others filed.

Earlier, Regional Trial Court Branch 23 Judge Generosa Labra dismissed the case filed by Lopez on five grounds.

Labra ruled that the petitioner is guilty of forum shopping after the court was informed that a separate case was also pending before Branch 10.

Lopez filed a petition for injunction with prayer for temporary restraining order (TRO) and writ of preliminary injunction before the court on the grounds that Universal Hotels and Resorts Inc. (UHRI) has no technical and financial capacity to enter a joint venture agreement (JVA) with the City Government.

UHRI will develop an integrated resort, including a casino on Kawit Island in the SRP through a JVA with the City.

Lopez, in his complaint, also said the City Council did not give its authority to Mayor Tomas Osmeña to sign the deal with UHRI.

On Daluz’s case, Lopez said issues presented were focused on the validity of the two resolutions granting authority to Osmeña to sign the JVA with UHRI that were approved during a session that was not in order.

On the ground that he has no legal standing to sue, Lopez said that as an elected barangay official and taxpayer, he has the right and a stake in whatever contract the City will enter into.

He added that as a taxpayer, he has personal and substantial interest in the case and will sustain direct injury as a result of the governmental act that is being challenged.

As to the court’s ruling on his lack of interest to prosecute the case, Lopez said it was put on record that he filed a “very urgent” motion on the resetting of preliminary hearing as his counsel had to appear in the French Embassy in Makati City during the schedule.

However, the motion was denied by the court.


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