Camp John Hay developer can't hide behind wall of suits—BCDA
Posted: July 08, 2012 | Category: Freeport And Ecozones
The Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) yesterday said it will pursue with even more vigor its efforts to collect more than P3 billion in rental arrears of the Camp John Hay Development Corp. (CJHDevCo), adding that the Sobrepena-led lessee “cannot hide behind a wall of suits” in an attempt to evade its financial obligations.
BCDA’s statement came after the CJHDevCo filed a complaint against the BCDA Board of Directors for violations of RA 3019, Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees, and The Civil Service Law at the Office of the Ombudsman on Wednesday, the fourth complaint filed against BCDA officials in the last four (4) weeks.
“In light of the ardent and determined pursuit of BCDA to enforce the government’s rights over Camp John Hay, BCDA questions the motive, timing, and frequency by which numerous cases are being filed against its Board of Directors,” BCDA president and chief executive officer Arnel Paciano D. Casanova said.
“BCDA remains steadfast in its goal of collecting the P3 billion indebtedness of CJHDevCo to the Philippine government which is for use in development projects that will benefit the City of Baguio and the Filipino people. Out of the total amount, a guaranteed P750 million will go to the City of Baguio,” Casanova added.
“No amount of diversionary or dilatory tactics could throw us off the track,” Casanova stressed.
He viewed the cases filed by the Sobrepena-led CJHDevco as part of a continuing harassment campaign against BCDA to deter it from performing its duty to uphold and protect the rights and interests of the Government and the Filipino people.
“The string of cases filed against BCDA in the past four (4) weeks suspiciously comes after BCDA’s termination of CJHDevCo’s Lease Agreement because of its refusal to pay its lease rentals,” said Casanova. It can be recalled that CJHDevCo officials were quoted as saying that “more cases” will be filed in the coming weeks.
“I believe we have clearly taken the common position of ‘pay up or ship out,’” Casanova said, alluding to a notice of termination served earlier on the John Hay lessee.
According to the BCDA, the CJHDevCo has done every conceivable thing except to show signs that it is willing to fulfill its contractual obligations to the government. “But we are not giving up in saving the John Hay project as we continue to explore all legal options to attain a logical and justifiable solution to this problem,” the BCDA said.