Capitol orders hospital, rehab center, barangay hall to vacate property

·3 min read

THE Cebu Provincial Government has demanded that two health facilities and a barangay hall vacate a 25-hectare property in Barangay Jagobiao, Mandaue City within 15 days after receipt of the demand letter dated September 8, 2022.

This, as the Capitol claims ownership of the land where the Eversley Childs Sanitarium and General Hospital (ECSGH), the Department of Health-Treatment and Rehabilitation Center (DOH-TRC) Cebu City and the Jagobiao Barangay Hall stand.

The Provincial Legal Office (PLO) already sent a demand letter to the head of each of the facilities—Dr. Pythagoras Zerna, ECSGH chief; Dr. Jasmine Peralta, chief of the DOH-TRC Cebu City, and Jagobiao Barangay Captain Michael Masinas.

According to the PLO, the Provincial Government is the “lawful owner” of the land, which has an area of 255,540 square meters or 25.554 hectares.

The parcels of land the Provincial Government is referring to are the following: Lots 1935 to 1946; 1965 to 1967; 1972 to 1974; 1982 to 1987; and 1992.

In an interview Monday, DOH 7 Director Jaime Bernadas told SunStar Cebu that they already endorsed the case to their central office’s legal office in Manila.

Peralta, for her part, expressed hope that the Provincial Government will donate the lot where the ECSGH and the rehabilitation center are situated.

Peralta said the less-than-a-hectare rehabilitation facility has been serving not just women but also drug and alcoholic dependents and those with comorbidities from other parts of the country.

The 100-bed DOH-TRC Cebu City is the first and only exclusive female drug abuse treatment and rehabilitation center with an area of 7,190.68 square meters. It caters to females who use drugs nationwide, mostly from the Visayas and Mindanao, and some parts of Luzon, according to the DOH 7 website.

“Prayer lang namin na sana ito ang maging way para baka sakaling ma-donate na lang sa amin kasi di ba we are also serving not just the people of Cebu but as far as Visayas and Mindanao and also Luzon,” she said.

In a separate interview, Masinas said he plans to seek the intervention of Mandaue City Mayor Jonas Cortes on the issue.

He admitted that the Barangay Council has no document to prove that it owns the lot where its barangay hall stands.

Masinas said the Capitol created a technical working group (TWG) composed of stakeholders of the aforementioned lots. The TWG convened a few months ago, he said.

The barangay captain said Gov. Gwendolyn Garcia had claimed that the land area was reportedly part of the friar lands and was reportedly donated by the Archdiocese of Cebu to the Province in the 1930s. This information reportedly came to the governor in 2019.

During their meeting, Masinas said the stakeholders were reportedly asked to give a “letter of no objection” that the Capitol owned the lot despite the absence of a deed of acceptance as the Capitol only showed a deed of donation.

Masinas said they have secured the ECSGH’s approval for all the developments they made within the about 400 square meters that the barangay has utilized.

He said they have no other properties where they could transfer their barangay hall.

Masinas said they were offered by Garcia to enter into a usufruct agreement so the barangay hall can continue to stay on the lot.