BAMARVA welcomes creation of a Market Review Committee

BAGUIO CITY – Lawyer Zosimo Abratique, president of the Baguio Market Vendors Association (BAMARVA), welcomes the creation of a Uniwide Market Development Plan Review Committee.

Abratique, on Tuesday, said he was optimistic that the result would be favorable to the market cooperative, which has been lobbying for the retention of the old public market facilities and be declared as a heritage site.

Abratique said the cooperative was ready to develop the remaining area of the Baguio City Public Market, which may not be covered by the declaration including the Hilltop Market, Hangar Market and the wet market – fish and meat sections.

The remaining old stone market buildings include the sari-sari, vegetable and the rice sections which were built by the Americans in the 1900s.

The Maharlika Livelihood Center, which was constructed under the Ministry of Human Settlements of then First Lady Imelda Marcos, now stands in the former bigger structure of the old stone market which was gutted by fire in 1970.

Earlier, Domogan explained that the review committee was created pursuant to Resolution No. 056, series of 2016 passed in April but was delayed due to the Motion for Reconsideration (MR) filed by several market vendors groups, including BAMARVA, questioning the earlier decision of the Supreme Court (SC) upholding the validity of the Uniwide contract and the constitutionality of Ordinance No. 038, series of 1995 that prescribed the rules and regulations for the development of the city public market.

The matter was resolved on July 5, 2016 when the SC denied with finality the MR filed by the vendors groups, Domogan said.

Uniwide representatives will appear before the review committee on August 1, 2016 to get their decision whether or not they will push through with the planned development of the market and whether or not the company is liquid enough to complete the project.

The company would be required to submit its detailed plans and programs of work for the project and if approved by the committee, it would be subsequently endorsed to the city council for approval, Domogan said.

Domogan explained that it would take sometime for the review process and the submission of the detailed plans and specifications to conform with the trend of the times.

The committee will study whether or not it is still feasible to build an 8-storey public market structure despite the existence of big malls and establishments within the Central Business District (CBD). PNA/