City, Capitol may go for land swap

CEBU City Mayor Tomas Osmeña and Cebu Gov. Hilario Davide III already came up with agreements on how to solve the issue of 93-1 lots.

The two officials met at City Hall and discussed the matter in a closed-door meeting yesterday.

Davide, when interviewed, said that the earlier proposal of the City to acquire the 93-1 lots for P500 million was no longer discussed. Such proposal was pushed by the administration of former mayor Michael Rama.

Wa na mi naghisgot ana (We no longer discussed about that). Well, you can say that (it is already out of the discussion),” he told reporters yesterday, referring to the P500-million proposal.

Instead, the governor said the City and the Province will pursue a land swap deal.

Davide disclosed that Osmeña offered to swap the Province lots occupied by urban poor families in 11 barangays in the city with that of a property at the South Road Properties (SRP).

He doesn’t know yet how many hectares are involved.

Duna na mi (We already have an) agreement in principle and what will be involved in the land swap. Amo na lang na e-reduce (We will reduce that) in writing and discuss it further. Sa akong bahin, ako pong konsultahon ang (On my part, I am going to consult the) Provincial Board,” he said.

Osmeña, in a separate interview, said the City is already finalizing the terms for the resolution of the 93-1 issue but he chose not to further about it.

“I don’t like to get into too much details,” he said.

Davide said that the City and the Province hope to be able to address the long-running issue by the end of the month.

Covenant

During the campaign period for the May 9 elections, both Osmeña and Davide signed a covenant stating that they will solve the problem 60 days after their assumption of office.

Under Ordinance 93-1, the Province gave occupants the chance to buy Capitol-owned lots in Barangays Apas, Lahug, Busay, Kamputhaw, Capitol Site, Kalunasan, Lorega, Mabolo and Tejero, all in Cebu City.

They had two years to pay, which was later extended to 10 years.

But when the extension ended in 2004, fewer than half of the nearly 5,000 Cebu City residents occupying 93-1 lots had paid for the lots in full.

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