Published by the Visayan Daily Star Publications, Inc.
|NINFA R. LEONARDIA|
Editor-in-Chief & President
NIDA A. BUENAFE
MAJA P. DELY
ANTONIO L. LEONARDIA|
It is over. Finished. Consumatum est.
Hope of any reversal of the decision of AyalaLand to cancel its plans to lease or purchase a prime area of Bacolod City owned by the Negros Occidental government, disappeared yesterday with the firm declaration of its officials that they have completely given up the idea of developing the property.
Now both officials and residents who had been looking forward to seeing an area in the city that would approximate those developed by the same company in other parts of the country, have to come to terms in accepting their decision. As business organizations, their main interest is their stakeholders’ benefit, to them, any other place in the country could provide what Negros Occidental cannot, or was prevented from doing.
Of course Negrenses and Bacoleños all know the reasons behind this development. But it will be to no one’s advantage anymore to keep cursing those who may have played the role of dog-in-the-manger. As business entities, each has its own interests to protect.
We cannot blame AyalaLand for its decision. It has all the right to be wary, since a court case, clerverly intended to block any attempt by the province to go around the opposition, is in place, and we all know how long court cases could last.
The question now is, what will the aggrieved and disappointed residents, especially the various group who are vocally protesting what has happened, take as their next step?
The optimism of local officials that this will not be the end of the world for the city and the province has justification. Negros Occidental and Bacolod will continue to draw businesses and investors. What has happened, with the actuation of one of them will, however, always leave a bad taste in their mouths.*