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Bacolod City, Philippines Tuesday, October 9, 2012
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Lobby on Ayala
turning to social network

A group of organizations and private citizens, calling on AyalaLand Inc. not to pull out of its plan to develop the 7.7-hectare property of the Negros Occidental provincial government, will be bringing their campaign to social media sites in the hope that it will go viral, Nestor Evaristo, vice president of the Hotel and Restaurant Association of Negros Occidental, said yesterday.

They have also started a text brigade campaign, he said.

“COA has spoken. There are no more legal impediments for the Ayala-Capitol Development Project. We, the people of Bacolod City and Negros Occidental, call on AyalaLand to reconsider their decision to pull out from this project, and appeal to SMPHI, to withdraw their court case against the province and its officials to give Negros a chance to grow and develop,” their text message says.

A copy of the Commission on Audit decision approving the sale and lease of the 7.7-hectare provincial government property to AyalaLand Inc. was delivered to ALI officials in Manila by assistant Provincial Legal Officer Mary Ann Manayon-Lamis Saturday.

She also delivered a letter from the provincial government asking ALI to reconsider its decision to disengage from the Capitol project, and yesterday said ALI would send a written response to Negros Occidental Gov. Alfredo Marañon Jr.

In an official statement issued Friday, ALI had said that, while it welcomes the COA approval of the Deed of Conditional Sale and Contract of Lease between the provincial government and Ayala, there is still a pending case before the Bacolod Regional Trial Court on the award of the property that could still be elevated to the higher courts.

SM Prime Holdings Inc. filed the case against the provincial government officials before the RTC, saying it was the rightful winner of the bid for the lease and sale of the 7.7-hectare property.

Jose Miguel Marco, ALI Corporate Communications head, said that “After more than 14 months of waiting, we maintain our intention to discuss a mutual disengagement with the Negros Occidental provincial government.”

ALI is now focused on the development of its 200-hectare North Point project in Talisay City that will promote more employment and business activity in Negros Occidental, he said.*CPG

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