Customs lot, bldg eyed for waterfront project | Inquirer News

Customs lot, bldg eyed for waterfront project

By: - Day Desk Editor / @dbongcac
/ 06:45 AM July 06, 2013

The Compaña Maritima lot and building claimed by the Cebu Ports Authority (CPA) as its own will form part of the Cebu City government’s Waterfront Development project, a legal consultant of Mayor Michael Rama said.

Jade Ponce, Rama’s executive assistant, said yesterday he’s discussing with some academic experts about the city’s plans to preserve the area’s historical value and coordinating with the city legal office in reviewing the legality of the CPA’s claim.

The CPA questioned Cebu City Hall’s plans to contest ownership of the Compaña Maritima lot, saying that the city government recognized its claim by asking their permission to use the lot several times.


CPA media liaison officer Karen Gonzales said a letter sent by the mayor’s office sought permission to use the Compaña Maritima lot for the annual Cebu City Hall inter-department sportsfest.


“That area should benefit all of the people of Cebu including the future generations,” Ponce said.

He said the Compaña Maritima lot will form part of the city’s heritage plans.

He said the lot connects to the nearby Malacañang sa Sugbu and the Pari-an heritage monument.

The city’s Land Management Commission passed a resolution during a meeting held last month asking the city assessor’s office to issue a tax declaration on the Compaña Maritima property and place the lot under the city’s name.

Ponce said the tax declaration would allow the city to assess the lot’s value and the taxes to be collected from its use.

Gonzales said a tax declaration doesn’t prove City Hall’s ownership of the lot.


“They (CPA) had authority (to use the property) but only as far as the use of the properties as a port (is concerned). But if the lot is no longer used as a port, they already lose their jurisdiction,” Ponce said.

Ponce said it’s no surprise that the city government considered taxing the lot only now after learning the CPA’s plans to build a maritime museum on the property.

In a press statement, acting CPA deputy general manager Yusop Uckung said the CPA owns the lot “based on legal and historical grounds.”

He said the Compaña Maritima lot and building and the surrounding area was covered by Presidential Decree 857 which turned over all supervision, control and regulation of port operations and construction of ports from the Bureau of Customs to the Philippine Ports Authority.

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“With the creation of the CPA, through Republic Act 7621, the Compaña Maritima properties were turned over by the PPA to the CPA,” Uckung said. . With Correspondent Michelle Joy Padayhag


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