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BCDA confident to get SC nod on CJHDevCo.

State-run Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) is confident to get a favorable ruling from the Supreme Court on its appeal against CJH Development Corp. (CJHDevCo) after the Court of Appeals allowed the Robert SobrepeAaAaAeA~a-owned company to stay in Camp John Ha

Arnel Paciano Casanova, BCDA president and chief executive, said that Court of Appeals Associate Justice Noel Tijam's decision reversing an order of the Arbitral Tribunal of the Philippine Dispute Resolution Centre is "grossly disadvantageous to the government."

Earlier, BCDA filed an appeal before the Supreme Court after Associate Justice Tijam allowed CJHDevCo to stay in Camp John Hay, Baguio City.

"It's highly irregular. We filed for Certiorari in the Supreme Court," Casanova said.

In a CA's 67-page decision, Associate Justice Noel Tijam modified the final award declaring CJHDevCo's obligation to vacate and deliver the leased property to BCDA as dependent on government's payment of P1.4 billion, which effectively rendered the arbitral award empty.

The BCDA, which was supposed to recover all new construction and permanent improvements as stated in the final award will get nothing, Casanova said.

Tijam also ruled that sub-lessees should not be evicted, contrary to the admission of Camp John Hay that its contractual relationship with the so-called "third parties" was a sublease.

Cassanova said Tijam's decision was "grossly disadvantageous to the government."

BCDA head for legal services lawyer Peter Paul Andrew Flores said based on the merits of the case, the BCDA is confident that the patently erroneous CA decision will not succeed in the Supreme Court.

"Public interest will eventually prevail," Flores said.

He said that should the CA decision be enforced, government will not benefit because the sublessees have already paid their lease to CJHDevCo until 2046.

The structures will be worthless by the time these are turned over to the BCDA in 2046 as the useable life of a building is only about 50 years, he said.

Earlier, the Baguio Regional Trial Court issued a decision for the final award to make the tribunal decision binding, executory and non-appealable and a writ of execution.

However, the CJHDevCo was able to secure a TRO from the CA, which eventually issued a decision not only stopping the implementation of the final award but modifying it.

BCDA said the CJHDevCo may have misled sub-lessees into believing that they were not affected by the final award.

The BCDA said since the start of the lease of government property to CJHDevCo, from 1998 to 2000, CJHDevCo fraudulently paid more than P1.274 billion as dividends and advances to its stockholders, affiliates but told BCDA that it was financially incapacitated to defer rental payments of at least P1.275 billion during the same period.


BCDA chair Arnel Paciano Casanova

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Title Annotation:Business News
Publication:Manila Bulletin
Date:Sep 14, 2015
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