Rival politicians provided side tensions in the impending court-ordered demolition of houses in sitio San Miguel, barangay Apas, Cebu City.
Cebu City Mayor Mike Rama and south district Rep. Tomas Osmeña made separate visits to the community of almost 168 households set to be demolished yesterday.
Rama visited the area early morning, while Osmeña went there around 1 p.m.
Osmena gave 15 boxes of ponkan oranges and financial aid to families who are relying on help from the Philippine Commision of the Urban Poor (PCUP).
Both Rama and Osmeña, said they didn’t want the demolition to happen and that the families need more time to relocate.
Vice Mayor Joy Augustus Young, who came with Osmeña, said they are assisting the urban poor community as they believe the settlers deserve to occupy the contested land. He said they engaged the services of lawyer Ben Militar for this.
Militar applied for Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) fromthe Regional Trial Court Branch 10 presided by Judge Soliver Peras.
The judge did not issue a TRO but ordered a reprieve of the demolition pending his ruling on the TRO petition.
The conflict stems from the ownership claim of Mario Godinez over the land, which was recognized by the court in 2002.
The court sheriff was at the site with laborers ready for a demolition but pulled out.
Osmeña told reporters that he was there to “observe.”
“I’m just here to observe, I will not prove myself to anyone.”
Upon learning that the court ordered the reprieve of the demolition orderRama said, “Mangutana sa ta sa court kon unsa buhaton. There’s a deferment in the implementation sa demolition.” “It is not yet over,” he added. /Tweeny M. Malinao and Careen L. Malahay