On Monday, April 7, the Municipal Council of Nicoya thoroughly discussed the potential purchase of land for the new cemetery for the city. Nevertheless, the councilors were once again unable to reach an agreement, postponing a decision until the next session.
The president of the council, Ana Lizeth Espinoza, explained that she still would not bring the measure to a vote because there are still “doubts” about the authenticity of the land that the municipality wants to purchase.
She stated that the property designated for purchase has problems with documents, due to the fact that the registered land survey, according to her research, “doesn’t exist.” She asserted that the survey documentation the municipality has in its possession is falsified.
Regarding the situation, she suggested that the council declare the sale process null and void, which would mean there was no winner.
There was an immediate reaction from the rest of the council members. Councilor Rodolfo Orozco requested that the president show the document on which she based her claims. Regardless, Espinoza didn’t show any document and assured the council that she had reached the conclusion after reading documents in the file.
For his part, Juan Edwin Yockchen reminded his colleagues that, “We cannot nullify a request for bids agreement; that is not our responsibility. Instead, we should pass it to the respective municipal department so they can make the decision.”
Similarly, Juan Luis Aguirre requested that the other council members understand the criteria used by the Cemetery Commission to reach a decision. Santos Juarez, president of the commission, explained that he was surprised by Espinoza’s statements. “I am the first to be surprised by the president’s words. No documents are lacking. We know that land surveys expire every year. The survey exists but it is expired.”
Juarez stated that they will review the requests made by the council, though he maintained that the land, owned by Mario Rojas Huertas, is the right property for purchase and the construction of the new cemetery. “There is no turning back; there is no land nearby that qualifies and those that do qualify are very far from the city of Nicoya.”
Neighbors oppose cemetery
During the session, residents of the community were present to hear about the council’s decision taken and express their opposition to the sale proceeding.
Jorge Quesada Alpizar, a resident of the Chorotega neighborhood, explained that the property does not comply with the minimum distance of 200 meters from groundwater recharge areas. He lives 110 meters from where the cemetery would be built. “It would affect me because the land is up above; there’s a slope and it will contaminate the well I have at my house,” he said.
In addition, Quesada indicated that the land survey should be renewed, as it is expired, and done again because it isn’t up to date.
The Cemetery Commission will meet with residents and present a report to the municipal council next Monday.