Saturday August 18, 2018

NHCP agrees to demolish Freedom Grandstand

THE National Historical Commission of the Philippines (NHCP) has agreed to demolish the Iloilo City Freedom Grandstand to give way for the development of Sunburst Park.

The Freedom Grandstand was considered a concrete monument of the Iloilo City Freedom Law or Republic Act 1209 in 1995 that the former mayor, Rodolfo Ganzon, authored. It strengthens the people's liberty to choose their leaders.

Marigold Ganzon Lapascua, sister of Vice Mayor Jeffrey Ganzon, earlier asked the NHCP to stop the demolition, saying the structure is an "important cultural property" or ICP.

Vice Mayor Ganzon also earlier appealed to delay the demolition, as it gives honor to his father.

But the NHCP, in a letter to Mayor Jose Espinosa III, said a structure is considered or presumed to be an ICP if it is no less than 50 years old under Section 5 of Republic Act 10066, also known as the National Cultural Heritage Act.

It said although the grandstand was built in 1950, it is no longer in its original shape due to two major renovations that took place in 1992 and 2003.

"Given these two supervening major renovations, both of which were undertaken before Republic Act 10066 took effect, the present Iloilo City Freedom Grandstand cannot be considered an ICP by the NHCP," it said. (Carolyn Jane Abello/SunStar Philippines)