Ur­gent ap­peal to the hon­or­able city mayor of Iloilo City

Panay News - - OPINION -

THIS

is an ap­peal to Hon. Jose Espinosa III, Iloilo City mayor, pray­ing to or­der the implementation of the third and fi­nal No­tice of Vi­o­la­tion is­sued by the of­fice of the Zon­ing Ad­min­is­tra­tor on Oct. 25, 2017 that ex­pressly de­clared, “Your poul­try op­er­a­tion is for­bid­den on the very place where it is presently op­er­ated and main­tained and the same is there­fore il­le­gal” and “di­rect you to im­me­di­ately cease and de­sist your poul­try busi­ness op­er­a­tion” with the warn­ing, “Your fail­ure to com­ply with this di­rec­tive will con­strain us to take dras­tic ac­tion.”

Seven months and 14 days al­ready lapsed but the op­er­a­tion of the medium-scale poul­try with 7,000 heads of lay­ers owned by spouses Ed­win and Ma. Ve­nia Abella and lo­cated just be­side the perime­ter of the fully in­hab­ited Villa Sto. Niño Sub­di­vi­sion per­sists, in de­fi­ance to the law­ful or­der of the City Zon­ing Ad­min­is­tra­tor which has long be­come fi­nal and ex­ecu­tory for fail­ure of re­spon­dents to file any mo­tion for re­con­sid­er­a­tion/ap­peal nor re­sort to ex­haus­tion of ad­min­is­tra­tive reme­dies un­der the law.

There is solid ev­i­dence to sup­port the find­ings that the Abella Poul­try Farm op­er­a­tion is il­le­gal. Dur­ing the First Tech­ni­cal Con­fer­ence with com­plainants, re­spon­dents and rep­re­sen­ta­tives of dif­fer­ent of­fices in at­ten­dance, it was es­tab­lished that sub­ject poul­try in ques­tion has: 1) No Lo­ca­tional Clear­ance 2) No En­vi­ron­men­tal Com­pli­ance Cer­tifi­cate nor Cer­tifi­cate of Non- Cov­er­age re­quired un­der Pres­i­den­tial De­cree (PD) 1586

3) No clear­ance from the City Health Of­fice on the suit­abil­ity of the lo­ca­tion pur­suant to Chap­ter IX PD 856, Im­ple­ment­ing Rules and Reg­u­la­tion on Nui­sance and Of­fen­sive Trade and Oc­cu­pa­tion 4) No Zon­ing Cer­tifi­cate 5) No up­dated Busi­ness Per­mit and if any, the same is sub­ject to can­cel­la­tion due to at­ten­dant vi­o­la­tions.

Com­plainants main­tain that the fi­nal and ex­ecu­tory No­tice of Vi­o­la­tion is­sued against the il­le­gal op­er­a­tion of the Abella Poul­try Farm can­not be stopped by any Re­strain­ing Or­der from any court. It is set­tled ju­rispru­dence that Re­strain­ing Or­der will not lie if the act sought to be re­strained is al­ready a “fait ac­com­pli.” Nei­ther will any court ac­tion re­sorted to by the re­spon­dents against the govern­ment of­fi­cials pros­per for fail­ure of the Abella spouses to ex­haust ad­min­is­tra­tive reme­dies.

It is very puz­zling why re­spon­dents in­sist on the op­er­a­tion of their poul­try farm. There is no le­gal ba­sis or jus­ti­fi­ca­tions to defy/dis­obey the law­ful or­der of CENRO.

Ours is a govern­ment of laws and not of men and no per­son is above the law. No right or priv­i­lege can arise from an il­le­gal act, oth­er­wise it will open the flood­gates for many to en­gage in all forms of dis­obe­di­ence to law and or­der.

We can still vividly re­call when the City Le­gal Of­fice im­me­di­ately or­dered in two days time the clo­sure of bars and nightspots af­ter 2 a.m. at Smal­lville Com­plex to pre­vent the ram­pant com­mis­sion of crimes by per­sons un­der the in­flu­ence of drugs and/or in­tox­i­cat­ing drinks. It raises quizzi­cal eye­brows why the same of­fice now finds it ex­tremely dif­fi­cult to im­ple­ment the law­ful, fi­nal and ex­ecu­tory or­der of CENRO for the Abella Poul­try Farm to im­me­di­ately stop.

Safe­guard­ing the lives and health of the af­fected res­i­dents of the sub­di­vi­sion from the hazard of the pol­lu­tion caused by and em­a­nat­ing from 7,000 heads of poul­try lay­ers is as im­por­tant as pre-empt­ing law­less ac­tiv­i­ties at Smal­lville. Le­gal pun­dits know that the life of a per­son can­not be val­ued by pe­cu­niary es­ti­ma­tion hence, it can­not be equated with the material con­cern of re­spon­dents of any pos­si­ble diminu­tion of profit or in con­se­quence on their part if the ques­tion­able poul­try clas­si­fied as il­le­gal per se were to be re­lo­cated else­where.

With the on­set of the rainy sea­son the un­pleas­ant odor from the poul­try in ques­tion has in­ten­si­fied, ag­gra­vated by the increasing num­ber of flies reach­ing the res­i­den­tial area.

Re­spon­dents per­sist up to this writ­ing with the op­er­a­tion of their poul­try with no sign of re­lo­cat­ing the same. While Iloilo City is known for its friendly, peace-lov­ing and law abid­ing res­i­dents we are ap­palled by the bla­tant de­fi­ance on CENRO’s law­ful or­ders.

Worst, the re­spon­dents’ fail­ure to ap­pear, in­clud­ing their coun­sel, dur­ing the re­cent sec­ond tech­ni­cal con­fer­ence de­spite due no­tice is in­deed con­temp­tu­ous. If it were com­mit­ted against the courts of law, it would have re­sulted to the is­suance of an or­der for their ar­rest. Such at­ti­tude is a mis­placed and un­war­ranted dis­re­gard of law and or­der in a civ­i­lized so­ci­ety.

We hope and pray that the good mayor of Iloilo City, the hon­or­able Jose Espinosa III, will hear the plight of the com­plainants if only to put an end to their mis­ery.

We fully sup­port your en­deavor to main­tain law and or­der and bring san­ity to the con­duct of pub­lic of­fi­cials geared to­wards the con­tin­u­ing progress of our beloved city. –

RES­I­DENTS OF VILLA STO. NIÑO SUB­DI­VI­SION, Iloilo City

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