SC orders 4 parties to implead in petition vs. Torre de Manila

November 25, 2014 11:16 pm 

By Perfecto T. Raymundo

MANILA, Nov. 25 (PNA) — The Supreme Court (SC) on Tuesday ordered to implead four parties in the petition filed against the construction of Torre de Manila.

The petition was filed by Knights of Rizal (KOR) against DMCI Homes, Inc. (DMCI), the owner of Torre de Manila.

”In view of the issues presented by the petition which have far-reaching implications, i.e., the extent of the constitutional protection applicable to heritage and cultural treasures as against property rights of land developers, the Court resolved to treat the original action for Injunction as one for Mandamus and ordered that the following parties be impleaded: (a) The City of Manila (as an indispensable party), and (b) the National Commission on Culture and the Arts (NCCA), (c) the National Museum, and (d) the National Historical Commission of the Philippines (all as necessary parties),” SC Public Information Office (PIO) Chief and Spokesman Atty. Theodore O. Te said in a press conference.

The KOR earlier asked the SC to stop the construction of the building owned by the DMCI.

They also wanted the SC to order the demolition of the said edifice.

The petitioners argued that they can elevate the case directly with the SC since the 1987 Constitution mandates the conservation and promotion of the country's historical and cultural heritage.

They also argued that construction violates several laws, including Republic Act No. 4846, or the “Cultural Properties Preservation and Protection Act”, and RA No. 10066, or the “National Cultural Heritage Act of 2009”.

The KOR said that their organization, established in 1911 and given legislative charter in 1951, has the legal standing to file the said petition against the DMCI.

The 46-storey Torre De Manila is a residential condominium which is 30 meters away from its nearest point to the edge of Rizal Park.

It is separated only by Taft Avenue and 789 meters away from the same nearest point to the Rizal Monument.

If pictures of the Jose Rizal Monument will be taken by tourists, Torre De Manila will be necessarily included in the photo.

“Worse, a completed Torre De Manila would forever ruin the sightline of the Rizal Monument in Luneta Park; Torre De Manila building would loom at the back and overshadow the entire monument, whether up close or viewed from a distance…Moreover, the importance of the landmark that is the monument will be devalued,” the petition said.

“The monument is the identifying mark of our country’s irreplaceable greatness where all foreign dignitaries, state visitors and the like pay homage and offered respect thereof,” it added. (PNA)

CTB/PTR/EDS

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