by Benjie de Ubago
The old Multi-Purpose Centre (MPC) site at Duke Street, Rooty Hill was not sold prior to the purchase of the new Schofields location. The first buyer backed out and a new one had requested for an extended settlement which is expected to eventuate sometime in September 2008.
This left the MPC board in a quagmire as to where to get the money to pay for the Schofields property which was costing more than the original price.
A benevolent soul in the name of Ms. Tess Lopez came to the rescue after a little coaxing from Father Paras and loaned the money to the tune of $300,000. A contract was signed between Ms. Lopez and the MPC trustees represented by Mr. Ed Yunon and Ms. Luz Tiqui, on the basis that the loan would be paid upon settlement of the Duke Street property. No caveats to the property were imposed although Ms. Lopez, after receiving advice from her solicitors may still consider doing so. Mr. Villon did not sign and was no where near during the signing.
“It was Father Paras who approached me, and I really could not say no,” said Ms. Lopez when interviewed.
Now, of course the MPC group is burdened with paying off not one but two loans and one can assume that interest is accumulating on both loans.
“They’ve been paying for the interest on a monthly basis,” said Ms. Lopez, referring to the $300,000 loan. Ms. Lopez however, was not even aware that the name had been changed from Multi-purpose Centre to Philippine Australian Cultural Centre. One wonders where the culture in this place is.
Despite Mr. Yunon’s reply that the name now fits more the purpose of the centre – that is when and if it ever gets built. But Mr. Yunon really only added basketball courts only to the list of uses which is not culture but sports. We can only hope that Ms. Lopez sees the color of her money by September. “Hindi naman siguro nila ako lolokohin,” she adds.
The community is now left in a quandary in a wait-and-see mode.