City nixes uniwide intent to develop the public market

A young girl, Eureka Debbie Palgue, 9 years old, opted to help out in selling flowers at the old Jadewell parking area at Burnham Park during her semestral-break. **RMC PIA-CAR

BAGUIO CITY – The city government rejected Uniwide company Chairman Jimmy Gow’s intent to proceed with and execute the Design-Build-Lease agreement with the city for the development of the city public market saying the agreement has been deemed terminated due to the dissolution of the Uniwide Sales Realty and Resources Corporation (Uniwide).
Gow in a letter to Mayor Benjamin Magalong dated Sept. 20 through legal counsels Aileen Grace Deticio and Mark Resty Derit reiterated his intent to continue with the project and requested for the city to issue a notice to proceed citing the “finality of the Resolution issued by the Supreme Court dated March 14, 2016 and the entry of the judgment having been made which upheld the validity of the Design-Build-Lease agreement and Ordinance No. 38 series of 1995.”
“In the intent to continue with the deal and to accommodate the market vendors who will be temporarily displaced, our client would like to express modification on the architectural design previously present before the city council to include leasable spaces to accommodate the existing vendors who stand to be displaced,” the letter read.
In his reply prepared by the City Legal Officer under Acting Legal Officer Melchor Carlos Rabanes, Magalong cited four reasons why the city “cannot anymore entertain your intent to proceed.”
“The aforesaid DBL Agreement is deemed terminated by operation of law; Uniwide is deemed dissolved and its corporate or juridical existence terminated; all assets of Uniwide are now vested in the court-appointed liquidator; and you have no more legal standing to deal with the City of Baguio with respect to the DBL Agreement as all matters pertaining to this Agreement have been transferred by alw in the hands of the Liquidator,” the mayor said.
He said the city’s legal stand is based on Section 113 of Republic Act 10142 or the Financial Rehabilitation and Insolvency Act of 2010 in the wake of the court’s issuance of Liquidation Order dated Nov. 23, 2017 against Uniwide Group of Companies including the Uniwide Sales Realty and Resources Corporation with which the city entered the agreement.
He informed Gow that the city had communicated its stand to court-appointed liquidator retired justice Martin Villarama that as of the date of the liquidation order, Uniwide is deemed dissolved and that the its DBL agreement with the city is deemed terminated.
He said a letter was sent to Justice Martin Villarama Jr., the court-appointed liquidator in line with the dissolution of the companies belonging to the Uniwide Group of Companies which include the USRRC as per the liquidation order dated Nov. 23, 2017.
In said letter to Villarama last August, the mayor asserted the city’s intention to avail of the provisions of RA 10142 and that it will not agree to any assignment of the market contract to any subsidiary or affiliate of the company. ** Aileen P. Refuerzo

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