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Sunday, September 26, 2021

Families lament: JVR, City Hall did not help us

THE family of the 22-year-old pregnant woman who died during a demolition in Barangay San Roque, Talisay City blamed the City Government for not coming to their aid.

Residents of Sitio San Rafael, Barangay San Roque also claimed that Talisay City Mayor Johnny De los Reyes did not help them convince Classique Properties and Development Corp. to postpone the demolition of their houses.

But De los Reyes denied that allegations of the residents.

In an interview yesterday, Louela Deo, the older sister of Jocelyn Deo, told reporters that if the City had intervened, her sister wouldn’t have died.

Deo, 22, suffered a fatal heart attack last Monday when she thought that members of the demolition team hired by CPDC were after her house.

The victim’s sister said that Deo was worried that she would lose her house just before she gives birth next month.

But after seeing the demolition last Monday, Deo, who reportedly had a heart problem, started complaining of chest pains.

Deo was first brought to the Talisay City District Hospital but was referred to a tertiary hospital in Cebu City where she died. The baby girl she carried also didn’t survive.

An emotional Louela said that since they got her sister’s body, they have been having trouble in holding a wake while also dealing with the ongoing demolition of their house.

Namatyan pa gane mi, gidemolish pa gyud ang among mga balay. Asa man namo hayaon ang akong igsuon? Sa gawas? (We lost a loved one and still our house was demolished. Where will we hold her wake? Outside?),” Louela asked.

She and her family were one of those who asked the City Government to postpone the demolition.

But despite the promises of De los Reyes, they still lost their homes.

Marlene Remata, another resident, also blamed the City for their plight.

Nihangyo unta mi ni Mayor nga inig human lang unta sa election mi nila papahawaon. Pero karun, asa man mi padung ani? Gusto unta mi mulayas padung sa Cebu City, pero Talisaynon man mi. Dinhi man nangdagko ang akong pamilya, dinhi ra sad mi mamatay (We requested the mayor to postpone the demolition until after the election. Where will we go now? We want to move to Cebu City but we’re Talisaynons. We grew up here, we will die here),” she said.

In a separate interview, De los Reyes said that last year, he was already able to convince CPDC to suspend their operations for three months to allow the residents to move out and settle somewhere else.

After three months, the demolition was again postponed for another year.

De los Reyes said he wants to give aid to the residents but the election ban prevents the City Social Welfare Office from releasing any funds.

In the meantime, the affected residents will be allowed to stay at the Lagtang Public Market.

As to Deo’s plight, he urged her family to approach him personally as he wants to assist them using his personal money.

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