ACTIEF to court: Junk civil petition filed by Cebu City

THE Asian College of Technology International Education Foundation Inc. (ACTIEF) asked the court to dismiss the civil petition for declaratory relief filed by the Cebu City Government against them and the Department of Education-Division of Cebu City.

While the City Government under suspended and outgoing Mayor Michael Rama is firm on its stand not to pay some P136.92 million of scholars’ tuition pending the decision of the case they filed before the court, Mayor-elect Tomas Osmeña said he is willing to pay the school when he assumed office.

“It’s a priority,” Osmeña said, referring to the tuition payment for the school.

He also plans to ask the school to release the transcript of records of the students who graduated from ACTIEF that were put on hold because of the refusal of the City Government to pay its dues. He said he has no control if students opted to study in ACTIEF since its the cheapest school that offers college courses to city scholars.

In their motion to dismiss received by the City Legal Office last Monday, ACTIEF, formerly known as Asian College of Technology, asked the court to drop the petition after the City reportedly failed to state a case of action and there was lack of cause of action.

Lawyers of ACTIEF said the City already admitted in its Dec. 28, 2015 comment to the respondent’s motion for preliminary hearing that even prior to the filing of the petition, the latter already suspended payments to the school under the memorandum of agreement they both signed.

“The respondents mistakenly argued that the petitioner has committed a prior breach of its obligations by not paying the respondents’ four previous billings covering the first and second semesters of school years 2013-2014 and 2014-2015. Because of this alleged prior breach, they moved for the dismissal of the petition,” read a portion of the motion of ACTIEF.

The City filed the petition to determine if it is allowed by law to pay ACTIEF following the Office of the Ombudsman’s resolution finding the school’s owner, Rep. Rodrigo Abellanosa (Cebu City, South District), of committing conflict of interest.

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