ORTIGOZA:   This politico incites the ignorant

September 25, 2017 at 4:55 pm Leave a comment

The debates on the transfer and construction of the new Dagupan City Hall became “nagkakainitan na” or acrimonious as the days passed by.
What aggravate the situation were for people like Vice Mayor Brian Lim telling half of the story or concocting or exaggerating another story that inflame the emotions of a large number of gullible, stupid, and ignorant people in the City.
Here were some of his salient declarations on his more than an hour interview at DWIZ – an FM radio station owned by the Cabangons, another nemesis of City Mayor Belen Fernandez.
Why the then administrations of then Mayors Cipriano Manaois, Libring Reyna, and Al Fernandez did not relocate to their family owned land the transfer of the new city (unlike what Mayor Belen was doing)?
MY ANSWER: Traffic congestion, the danger imposed by the rickety worn out wood made government edifice, and flooding did not pose so much inconveniences and dangers before as what they posed today. Beside, there was no Kerwin Fernandez before who has the benevolence today to donate 1. 2 hectares of land worth P400 million as situs for the new City Hall.
That’s a lot of saving for the Dagupan City’s government if she can be spared to borrow from bank just to buy a land.

When Lim was asked about the legal opinions of City Lawyer Vicky Cabrera and the legal luminaries of the Department of Interior & Local Government and the Commission on Audit that the donation and the transfer of the deteriorating government building was not illegal, Lim cited the following:
“The opinion of Cabrera was nothing. The decisions of the COA and DILG can be bought (opinion nasalew).
So, for me, whose opinion is credible?
 As far as I know, Lim was not able to cite any jurisprudence or legal opinion from an entity to back up his charges of corruption against Fernandez.
He only said that opinion should be from the court calling it “judicial opinion”.
Nakita ko may illegal, siguradong may illegal,” he said.
MY ANSWER: It’s Brian’s opinion versus those lawyers from the government. Many observers like me could pin point that there was no anomaly on the donation, the transfer, and the properties of the family of the mayor surrounding the location of the proposed edifice that Lim said would benefit on the presence of a government building.
Here’s my column on “My Debate with a De Venecia on the City Hall’s Brouhahas”:
“I told the quite skeptical Dagupan City former Councilor Alex that the mayor said in 2013 that she divested her interest at the corporation thus she is relieved to any anti-corruption case.
“Besides, her signature of the ordinance (for the acceptance of the donation) will be ministerial as she can even refuse to sign it and the ordinance became a law in ten days, you know that as a former dad, or she can even veto the ordinance and the bill still becomes a law after two-third members of the City Council override it,” I told Alex who was a two-term councilor of the Sangguniang Panlungsod (City Council). I explained that the “Voice of the People is the Voice of God” or “Vox Populi Vox Dei” was represented by the council members who empowered the mayor to accept the donation.
Since the issue of the relocation of the city hall is divisive, Alex, a law graduate, said that a referendum is necessary to get the sentiments of the people. I disagreed because it is only lengthy and it’s only an option but not compulsory for the Council as the law did not mandate it”.

Opps, before I forgot, Lim refuted the COA and DILG opinions since the people there can be bought and suggested that the local government unit gets a judicial opinion.
Lim, as a Bachelor of Law graduate should know the jurisprudence (as seen on Nobleja vs. Teehankee (L-28790)) that says “It is not the function of the court to give advisory opinions in relation to Section 12 of Article VIII (Judiciary) of the Constitution”.
He cited that Mayor Fernandez and family “Kumita ng bilyones, umutang ng bilyones. Kita sa dalen (lands near the proposed city hall) around 1.5 billion, sa utang 1.5 billion’.
MY ANSWER: The last time I saw the accusation at Lim’s D’Dagupan Dream Face Book Community Page that the Fernandez Administration was plotting to borrow P500 million from government bank for the construction of the edifice was three months ago. Then the P500 million became P1.2 billion last month. At his radio interview yesterday, it ballooned, son of a gun, to P1.5 billion to P2 billion.
Susmariosep, where did Lim get all these exaggerated and baseless financial figures that made many people crazy and furious in the Bangus City?
Now these gullibles are threatened and afraid that they would not be drowned by the delap or flood but by the two billions of pesos of loan the vice mayor painted before their eyes.
Gold plated siguro ang dingding ng bagong munisipio kaya two billion pesos na! Next month I’m afraid Lim would say it would be P3 billion. Salamabit, that would be a budget for the construction of an economic zone where skyscrapers made by the Ayalas, Gokongweis, Sys abound.

City Councilor Netu Tamayo said that there was no such thing as hundreds of millions of pesos loan because the legislative body has not discussed it yet.
Mayor Fernandez, when I asked her about these amounts, told me a month ago that she would be looking for funding for the new city hall from the powers that be.
Here’s another talent of Lim in “fomenting unrest” to go against Fernandez:
The old city hall would be used for the business of the family of the mayor. 
Susmariosep, this was not true. I saw a proposed plan to make the old city hall, a heritage site, as a museum.
Here’s another audacity of the vice mayor to misinform the hoi-poloi.
When asked that his father sold the city owned former five star hotel seven-storey McAdore Palace for a song that disadvantaged the city, Lim said that the city government instead earned in that transaction.
That sale is now being litigated in court.
We bought that property for P50 million, we sold it for P119 million. P119 minus P50 million equal P69 million profits we have,” he told his two interviewees as seen on Face Book’s video.
But that was half of the story, here’s the truth that many suspected greed rear its ugly head.
Mayor Fernandez said that the real price of McAdore in early 2000 when then Mayor Benjie Lim, father of then Councilor Brian, bought the property from the government owned Asset Privatization Trust was P200 million. It was fire sale sold to the City for P50 million because of the intercession of then President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo, whose mother was a Pangasinense, acquiesced to the request of then Mayor Al Fernandez and Albert Balingit – a family friend .
Then Mayor Lim later wanted to sell the Palace for P68 million with the local government here still required to pay the 6 percent Capital Gain Tax and the 1.5 percent Documentary Tax at the Bureau of Internal Revenue for the sale.
“Compute ko iyan sabi ko mayor hinde pa (ba) tayo nalugi diyan? Dahil iyong lupa na binigay sa atin ng mura kailangan ibalik natin at gawin nating city hall,” Fernandez, who was the vice mayor then told Lim.
She added to Lim that if he was persistent to sell it he should trade the 11,000 square meters hotel at P400 million in the prevailing market value of the real properties located at the heart of this city.
But Lim and those councilors that  included Lim’s son Brian succeeded in selling to the AMB ALC Holding  which won the bidding for P119 million or approximately P18,500 per sqm in January 28, 2013.
Critics slam that the sale as anomalous and disadvantageous to the local government because then Mayor Lim sold in 2005 his nearby 715-sqm property to Land Bank for P35, 000 per sqm.
My poser: Was Brian Lim lying just to agitate the people of Dagupan City? That’s for you readers to interpret.

(You can read my selected columns at http://mortzortigoza.blogspot. com and articles at Pangasinan News Aro. You can send comments too at totomortz@yahoo.com

Entry filed under: News.

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