File photo

City councilor Elgin Damasco belied the City Engineering Office’s (CEO) claim that the delay in the construction of the P190 million new public market in Barangay Matahimik is a property dispute with a private landowner.

Damasco, in his privilege speech during the City Council session on Monday, shared a video of a certain Miss Bernadette Patcho saying that no claim was made by them, pointing out that making their family as a scapegoat for the failed project is “wrong and unbecoming of a city official”.

“Wala kaming alam sa ganyang usapin kasi labas yan sa area namin. Hindi tama na gawin nila kaming dahilan,” Patcho said.

Damasco slammed city engineer Alberto P. Jimenez Jr., stating that the CEO was not solving the issue and was mere “hacking the leaves and not digging at the roots”.

“Dahil sa tsismis, na-delay. Nagsisinungaling si Engr. Jimenez at pinagtatakpan ang contractor,” Damasco said.

City councilor Jimmy Carbonell affirmed Damasco’s statement and said that he is convinced that the contractor, Square Meter Trading and Construction Corp. (SMTCC), is not equipped for the job and recommended to change the contractor instead.

City councilors Nesario Awat and Henry Gadiano urged to finish the discussion in a separate meeting as there was no representative from the CEO to clarify their earlier claim.

The city council decided to refer the concern to a joint meeting with the Committee on Public Works and Market; and the Committee on Legal Matters.