New DOJ building breaks ground
The groundbreaking ceremony for the new Department of Justice (DOJ) building was held yesterday inside the Department of Agriculture (DA) compound on M. Velez Street, Cebu City.
The new four-story building, which will cost around P100 million, will be erected on a 3,000-square meter lot.
In his message during the ceremony, Gov. Hilario Davide III recounted that last January, former Justice secretary Benjamin Caguioa requested for a donation of an area where a new hall of justice will be constructed. The signing of a deed of donation between the provincial government and the DOJ was held last May 19.
“The provincial government is just really happy to donate this land to the DOJ,” he said.
“The provincial government is one with you. We want you to have a new hall of justice and we’re just so glad to give you a part of the assets of the provincial government.”
The governor said that he also requested the Supreme Court to reconvey the old palace of justice located within the Capitol compound to the provincial government so that it could be retroffited and used as additional offices.
The old palace of Justice was rendered unsafe for occupancy after it was damaged by the 7.2-magnitude earthquake in 2013.
Justice Secretary Emmanuel Caparas, who was present during the event, described the ceremony as an important moment for Cebuanos as the area will be the site of a building that would service the whole of Cebu.
“I hope in the years to come, when the building is finally erected that everybody remembers why this is happening,” he said.
“This is all happening because of everyone’s intention, everyone’s passion to serve the public the best way possible. Regardless of who will be the officers in the years to come, please always remember the spirit behind all of these – it is the spirit of public service. It is the spirit of honest-to-goodness public service,” Caparas said.
He said the building would take around three years to complete and would house the prosecutors’ offices and all the other attached agencies of the DOJ.
“We’re going to have the witness protection program there. There will be conference facilities,” Caparas said.
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