BCDA: No plans to take over Camp John Hay

Posted at 01/26/12 7:08 PM

MANILA, Philippines - State-run Bases Conversion and Development Authority (BCDA) denied on Thursday that it was planning to take over Camp John Hay Development Corp.'s (CJHDevCo) leased properties in the former American recreation center in Baguio City.

BCDA issued the statement after CJHDevCo secured a temporary restraining order (TRO) from the Baguio regional trial court, barring BCDA from taking over the company's establishments, facilities and administrative offices within the John Hay Special Economic Zone (JHSEZ).

"As far as the BCDA is concerned, there is no legal basis for the TRO. No takeover has taken place and no attempt has been made, hence the court order comes as a surprise and mystery to us," BCDA president and CEO Arnel Paciano Casanova said.

The Baguio court issued the TRO, saying CJHDevCo "would suffer grave and irreparable injury" if the BCDA wrestled control of its properties, including the Camp John Hay Golf Club, the Manor Hotel, Camp John Jay Suites Hotel and several administrative offices.

BCDA and CJHDevCo have been at odds as the latter continually defaulted on its lease payments to the government agency.

“They’re afraid of their own ghost which they created trying to evade their huge obligation to the government,” Casanova said, noting that CJHDevCo owes the government P3 billion.

"BCDA has always taken the normal route in asking CJHDevco to pay its obligations. It is CJHDevco which has been precipitate and unreasonable with its actions. What they are doing is grossly disadvantageous to government,” he added.

CJHDevCo has complained that BCDA failed to comply with its contractual obligations as stipulated in their 2008 Restructuring Memorandum of Agreement, which calls for the setting up of the so-called One-Stop Action Center (OSAC), which will facilitate the granting of permits for developments inside JHSEZ.

CJHDevCo claimed that the OSAC was not fully functioning.

The BCDA, however, said that the OSAC has actually been issuing around 80 permits each year to CJHDevCo, and in instances it could not grant permits, it was because CJHDevCo has not complied with certain requirements.