Almost two weeks have passed after a magnitude 6.6-magnitude earthquake struck Mindanao, but the damage it has brought are still apparent, including the ruins of Eva’s Hotel, which is now seen standing dangerously standing beside Kidapawan Doctors’ Hospital.
Kidapawan Mayor Joseph Evangelista on Friday said he had already released a week’s notice to the owners for the demolition of the building; however, they asked for another week of extension before they can totally demolish the ruins.
Part of Claudio Street and Quezon Boulevard, the area where the now-shattered landmark stands, is currently not operating even as Kidapawan has started to bounce back from devastation.
As of the moment, the upper floors of Eva’s Hotel have fallen on its ground floor while the pillar of its facade looks like it’s actually about to collapse.
According to Evangelista, out of 20 or 23 buildings, it is by far the only establishment ordered for closure.
Meanwhile, the hotel’s manager and son’s owner, Artchie Viloria said they asked for the extension because the P5 million charged by the demolition company is too much for them. So, the family is still looking for a company that will offer a “reasonable price.”
Viloria also mentioned that the city government had given them an ultimatum to pull down the hotel or they would demolish it themselves and get the “recoverables” inside the building.
“Imagine, in the hotel, there are still the air conditioners, the televisions in all of the 61 rooms and the orthopedic equipment there. How much do they cost?” he said.
“The top floor of the building is where we live. We are still trying to recover all of our belongings there,” Viloria added.
The pressure to demolish the building
Moreover, he questioned the way of Kidapawan city government compared to Davao city government’s course of action in managing such problems.
“If you remember the NCCC mall of Davao, which was burned because of faulty wiring, it was the Davao city government that shouldered the demolition cost of the structure,” Viloria said.
“Why can’t the [Kidapawan] city government do that for us? After all, it was a natural calamity that struck us, and we’d been paying as much as P800,000 in local taxes yearly.”
He stated that they never attempted to skip paying due taxes and that they never sought for the city government’s service unlike other investors.
“This would be the first time for us to avail [ourselves] of the services [of] the [city] government, so, why can’t [it] shoulder the demolition cost?” Viloria added.
Moreover, he cited the Davao city government provided for the demolition of the burned NCCC mall, saying this was “classic example” of where that government should step in and do its work.
“Why are we being pressured by the mayor? Where does [the] calamity fund [go] in times of crisis?” he asked.