Tomas: Kawit Island project a go

By: Morexette Marie B. Erram August 20,2018 - 10:58 PM

A perspective of the proposed Kawit Island development project. /CDN file photo

Unless a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) is issued by the court, there is no stopping Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña from pushing through with the groundbreaking ceremony for the P18 billion Kawit Island development project.

Francisco Fernandez, executive assistant to the mayor, said that business tycoon John Gokongwei Jr., who owns and operates JG Summit Holdings Corp., is expected to attend the groundbreaking ceremony.

But the date of the event is yet to be scheduled in accordance with good Feng Shui, he said.

Fernandez said that the groundbreaking ceremony was first scheduled on Saturday, but it will have to be rescheduled on a still undetermined date next month to avoid bad Feng Shui.

According to Buddhist and Taoist beliefs, ghosts roam on the Earth on the seventh month of the lunar calendar, and bring bad luck to anyone including those who will enter into new business ventures.

While they finalize the date for the groundbreaking ceremony, Fernandez said, the Gokongwei-led Universal Hotels and Resorts Inc. (UHRI) is now in the process of complying with the documentary requirements for the issuance of permits for the Isla dela Victoria project.

The P18-billion development will include hotels, an amphitheater, a casino, and convention centers.

“They(UHRI) are now (in the process of) submitting the necessary papers so that they can obtain the building permit and have their building plans approved. Once these are done and complied with, they can (already) start (with) the construction,” Fernandez said.

Mayor Osmeña and Gokongwei entered into a Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) on August 17 to already seal the project implementation.

But critics are not yet giving up on their hopes that its implementation will be stopped by the court.

The court has set an August 30 hearing on the petition for injunction and the issuance of a TRO and writ of preliminary injunction against the JVA filed by Busay Barangay Councilor Amilo Lopez who called the project as “grossly disadvantageous” to the city.

Members of the opposition group United Barug Team Rama led by Vice Mayor Edgar Labella have also asked the court to nullify the resolution which Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan (BOPK) Councilors passed to authorize Osmeña to sign the JVA.

Mayor Osmeña said that any attempt to stop the Kawit Island project that is expected to generate at least 5,000 employment opportunities is “political suicide.”

“To me, they’re (opposition Councilors) just scaring the investor anyway. Scaring anybody who would work with us,” he said.

Labella said he will continue to oppose the P18-billion project even if this would mean an end to his political career.

“It would really be a political demise on my part. (But I won’t mind) for as long as what I believe (in) is right and what is good for the people of Cebu City,” he said.

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TAGS: GO, Kawit island, project, Tomas
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