'Second Pearl Harbor': Locsin opposes 'plot' to sell PH properties in Japan

Willard Cheng, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Sep 14 2020 04:43 PM

MANILA - Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin, Jr. expressed opposition to a proposal to sell four of the Philippines’ properties in Japan, exposing the “plot” as “a second Pearl Harbor perpetrated by Filipinos on our own patrimony.”

In a tweet, Locsin said the Department of Foreign Affairs (DFA) has sent its position to Congress opposing the plan. He vowed to “fight this to their end.”

Locsin said that the plight of Filipino war veterans “have been invoked by every gang of officials who've run through the budgets of their own agencies” as officials toward the end of a term eyeing a “retirement fund of last resort.”

“There is another plot to dispose of 4 of our Japan properties. This is a second Pearl Harbor perpetrated by Filipinos on our own patrimony. There are other ways to help Veterans—BCDA was sold for them but proceeds were stolen. We already sent our position to Congress opposing it,” he said.

“I will fight this to their end. Sh*t before I go down in ignominy as the guy who sold our Japan properties,” he added.

“…dollar patriotism. Not while I am alive,” he said. “Kaching, kaching. Disgusting!!!!”

Locsin did not specify if the latest plot to sell includes the Philippine government property in Roppongi, acquired through the 1956 Reparations Agreement between the Philippine and Japan following World War II. 

There had been repeated attempts to develop or sell the Roppongi property since the Marcos administration.

According to information posted by the Philippine Embassy in Japan, the Marcos government's attempt to develop the property was abandoned following the 1986 People Power revolution.

Inheriting “an economy in shambles and a bankrupt treasury, the Cory Aquino government tried selling the property but ended “in a failure of bid.” In the second bidding, the Supreme Court would rule that the property could not be disposed of without the concurrence of Congress.

The Corazon Aquino-era Executive Order No. 296 issued in 1987 authorized the sale, lease or any manner of disposition of four lots in Japan acquired by the Philippine government through the Reparations Agreement, namely:

(1) Roppongi property, Tokyo, in 306, Roppongi 5-chome, Minato-lu, Tokyo; 
(2) Nampeidai property, Tokyo in 11-24 Nampeidai-machi Shibuya-ku, Tokyo; 
(3) Naniwa-cho property, Kobe, in 63 Naniwa-cho Chuo-ku, Kobe City; and, 
(4) Obanoyama-cho property, Kobe, in 1-980-2 Obanoyama-cho, Shinohara, Nada-ku, Kobe.

“The plight of our poor veterans, so few of them left, have been invoked by every gang of officials who've run through the budgets of their own agencies. Usually happens toward the end of a term. Retirement fund of last resort,” Locsin said.