FORMER Cebu City mayor Tomas Osmeña dared the Cebu City Government to account for all the donations it received for the construction of the new Cebu City Medical Center (CCMC).
In a press conference yesterday, Osmeña said that Mayor Michael Rama should present the funds to the people considering that these were gathered through donations.
“Last year Rama went to the United States to raise money for CCMC. One month, we had no mayor because he was traveling around America to raise money for CCMC. When he came back, he announced that he was able to raise P900 million in donations. But, where’s the P900 million? Where’s the money? It’s gone,” said Osmeña.
After his three-week trip in August last year, Rama announced he has secured a total of P912.04-million in pledges from Filipino communities in five states for CCMC, which would be enough to fund the construction of six floors of the building.
Filipino communities in Las Vegas, Houston, Seattle, San Diego and Salinas, California vowed to help shoulder the construction of the new public hospital, Rama said in his previous announcement.
Osmeña said that Diwa Cuevas, acting city treasurer, should make an accounting of the donations for CCMC.
Aside from the donations from the Filipino communities abroad, the former mayor also asked City Hall to account the money raised from “Piso Mo, Hospital Ko” fundraising campaign.
In December 2014, the City Government reported it had collected more than P16.2 million through the fund drive, more than a year after the activity was launched.
“Where is the piso-piso fund now?” Osmeña asked.
He said it should be given importance considering that poor constituents of the city, including school children, spared some amount to donate for the new hospital.
Construction of the first phase of the new CCMC has started in July last year.
Sought for comment, Rama said the amount Osmeña was asking were still pledges and not cash.
He said all of the donors were just waiting for the portion of the structure to stand since they vowed to help the construction of the succeeding floors of the hospital.
Meanwhile, the former mayor refuted Rama’s pronouncement that Cebu is a Binay country.
During the Cebu launching of the coalition between the United Nationalist Alliance (UNA) and One Cebu Party, Rama said that the alliances of the two opposition parties is another proof that Cebu “is now Binay country.” Team Rama, the mayor’s local political group, is also an ally of UNA.
Osmeña said yesterday that no one owns Cebu because the place is for the Cebuanos.
“Cebu City belongs to the Cebuanos. Mike Rama has no right to give Cebu City to anyone. That’s an insult to the Cebuanos,” he said.
Osmeña, who is running for mayor this May 9 elections and who belongs to the administration Liberal Party, said that even standard-bearer Mar Roxas did not claim ownership of the city.
If Cebu is a Binay country, Osmeña said the vice president should have not lost at least 500,000 votes during the last elections.