The City Council asked the National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) and the City Police Office (CPO) to investigate two groups that are reportedly grabbing lands in Purok Westwood, Barangay San Pedro.
Councilor Jimmy Carbonell said during their regular session that the two law enforcement agencies can help in looking into allegations that land-grabbing syndicates are stealing properties from owners and residents in the barangay.
Thirteen residents from Purok Westwood attended the regular session to air their concern and ask for assistance against what they call as “squatting syndicates.”
Rustico Hitosis, president of the Purok Westwood Association, told the media that a certain Eliceo Patricio Oloroso who claims to be the overseer of Kadakilaan Estate Group (KEG) and Doña Lourdes Yaneza Group (DLYG), are claiming their lands.
“Noong nakaraang linggo lang po nagulat kami na may naka-paskil na ‘no trespassing’ na sa lugar namin. Nagwo-worry kami kung bakit nagkaroon na ng ‘no trespassing’. Si Mr. Eliceo Oloroso siya ay nag-file ng kandidatura sa pagka-mayor dito sa Puerto Princesa City. Kung siya daw ang manalo ibibigay niya daw ang kalupaan ng Puerto Princesa sa mga tao,” Hitosis said.
Oloroso’s group, he said, went house-to-house last year, deceiving people that they are the real owners of the residential area of Purok Westwood.
Hitosis added that the two groups presented to the residents a number of “suspicious documents claiming and illustrating” their ownership not only of Purok Westwood, but of the total land area of Puerto Princesa and of the whole Philippines.
He said some were fooled and three of the 10 phases in the village paid P13,000 each.
He added the groups are also charging the whole Westwood Homeowner Association (WHA) P3 million for occupancy.
Another resident, Marietta Dela Cruz, said the original owner of the nine-hectare land area is Gregorio Edradan.
He mortgaged it to a certain Erlinda Cruz.
Barangay councilor Fransisco Gabuco said the question of who is the real land owner is now pending before the court.
“They have been there for 20 years and alam nila na mayroong legal matters na pinag-uusapan. May kaso po, so bakit pagpunta dyan ng tao at sasabihing ‘amin ‘yong lupa, ganito ‘yong ibayad niyo sa akin’ [then] magbabayad sila,” Gabuco said.
The resolution is with a proposed ordinance that aims to penalize unlawful taking and selling of lands.
Vice Mayor Luis Marcaida said the residents have asked him for help but he decided to refer the matter to the City Council.
“Humihingi po [sila] ng tulong sa inyo upang mapigilan ang patuloy na panloloko at pagpasok ng isang sindikato na nagpapakilala na may-ari ng buong kalupaan ng Puerto Princesa at kasama na rin ang Palawan at buong Pilipinas,” the vice mayor said.
The City Council approved the resolution but the ordinance was referred to the committee on legal matters.