A long-standing passageway dispute between Badian Island Resort and Barangay Lambug officials has been finally resolved by the Province in a most harmonious way.
Cebu Vice-governor Agnes Magpale accompanied by 2nd District Provincial Board members Peter John Calderon and Christopher Baricuatro and Liga ng mga Barangay chief Celestino Martinez III met for a face-to-face discussion with Barangay Lambug Barangay Captain Menasis Silvano and Badian Island Resort’s president Hartwig Scholz and General Manager Maria Catral at the resort on April 13.
The meeting occurred following a complaint letter received by Governor Hilario Davide III and Magpale from Scholz informing that the five-star luxury resort will stop operations due to unsolved roadway issues after several attempts to resolve them.
Davide, as Provincial Tourism Commission (PTC) head, advised Magpale to look into the situation and find an acceptable solution. Magpale immediately gathered the officials involved and set an appointment with the officers of the resort.
“We know the importance of this meeting. It’s a pity that a resort like this will just go away,” Magpale said.
Badian Island Beach Resort and Spa is a five-star resort established in 1980.
In the same year, Eurasia Holiday Resort Corp. (Badian Island Resort and Spa) bought parcel of land in Sitio Manay-as thatis used as a parking garage and a wharf as the entry to the resort.
Eurasia together with the help of the local government unit (LGU) constructed a 1.8-kilometerroad from the highway up to the seashore where the wharf is situated.
In 2010, the roadway issue surfaced when a basketball court was built on top of a portion of the barangay road, blocking the ingress and egress of the resort’s property.
Furthermore, a landowner, an heir, whose grandfather gave up the portion of the land for easement passage, laid claim on the property but has not shown any proof of ownership or right of possession.
The landowner put up barricades on the road, which restricted and prevented the resort from using it unless they will pay a toll fee of P900 (in and out) per vehicle.
The barangay chief said that the collection of P900 has been stopped but the closing of the road would often happen.
Resort management said for almost five years they have sought the help of the barangay and town officials, Provincial Government and National Government agencies but they haven’t received a clear response or solution on the matter.
In light of the situation, everyone agreed to come up with a win-win solution.
“We must find a solution that doesn’t go to court. We all must compromise,” Magpale said.
Magpale proposed exploring nearby areas for the transfer of the basketball court in exchange for using the access road, which Silvano agreed.
“Basta naa laing kabalhinan diri sa sitio, wala gyud koy problema ana, basta naa lang gyuy kadulaan sa mga kabatan-onan, nga dili tawon maadto sa kadautan,” said the barangay chief.
In the discussion, the resort owner pledged to give money to purchase the land while the Cebu Provincial Government will shoulder the expenses of the construction of the new and improved appearance of basketball court.
Meanwhile, Martinez also advised to send in a provincial surveyor to reconstruct boundaries and establish the parameters of the properties in question, including the barangay road.
An elated Sholtz appreciated Capitol’s intention to help them solve their problem and quickly came up with a resolution. He thanked Silvano as well.
“I hope and pray that everything will be smooth. All is well that ends well,” Magpale said.
The meeting was also attended by PTC consultants Dawnie Roa and Teta Baad, provincial tourism officer Grace Paulino and Magpale’s legal adviser Atty. Dara Acusar.