BACOLOD SLAUGHTERHOUSE ROW Operator hauls city hall to court


BACOLOD City — The operator of the city’s slaughterhouse in Barangay Handumanan here has urged the court to compel the city government to release its business permit.

In a petition for mandamus filed before the Regional Trial Court here, AVM Bernardo Engineering is also seeking from city hall P200,000 for moral damages and P50,000 for exemplary damages.

Mayor Monico Puentevella has refused to issue a business permit to AVM Bernardo Engineering for alleged violations of its contract with the city government.

Puentevella has also said he may seek to terminate the contract with AVM.

AVM plant site manager Glorydee Cometa filed the petition on Aug. 12 (Case No. 14-14368). Their counsel is Atty. Marvin Tañada.

According to Puentevella, AVM’s move gives him “more reason to terminate” their contract.

But he also said in a text message yesterday he has not yet received a copy of the petition.

AVM said the city government has been issuing it a business permit yearly since it started operating the slaughterhouse in 2008.

The city government, then under Mayor Evelio Leonardia (now congressman), signed the contract with AVM on Feb. 7, 2007.

This year, however, the city government under Puentevella “remained adamant” in releasing AVM’s renewed business permit even though it has “religiously secured the requirements for application,” the slaughterhouse operator claimed.

“The foregoing acts of the respondent (city government) brought on the petitioner (AVM) material and moral deprivation, threatening the sovereign rights and interest of the petitioner,” AVM’s petition read.

“Should the foregoing acts be sustained, [they] will cause further irreparable damage and injury to the petitioner,” it read.

AVM also asked the court to order the city government to pay for its P60,000 attorney’s fee, plus P3,000 for every court appearance of its lawyer, and P20,000 for litigation expenses./PN