Friday, February 13, 2015

Graft charges filed vs Marinduque governor, other officials

Charges of graft have been filed against incumbent Marinduque governor Carmencita Reyes, her vice governor and other provincial officials of Marinduque in connection with the alleged anomaly in the renovation of a provincial airport amounting to P8.95 million.
In a 12-page complaint filed before the Office of the Ombudsman in Quezon City on Monday afternoon, Melecio Go, former Sangguniang Panlalawigan member and a representative of construction firm Sargasso Construction and Development Corporation, accused Reyes and Marinduque Vice Gov. Romulo Bacorro Jr. of violating provisions of Republic Act (RA) 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and RA 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards of Public Officials as well as Dereliction of Duty.

Marinduque Airport screencap by Toby Jamilla from Google

Also slapped with the same charges were Norma Recohermoso, chairman of the provincial committee on environment and transportation, Harold Red, chairman of the committee on public works, lawyers Miguel Ongsiako and Fe Garcia, and the members of the provincial mining board.

Go was accompanied by Volunteer Against Crime and Corruption (VACC) founder and president Dante Jimenez and VACC chairman Martin Diño in the filing of the complaint.
“The VACC finds the complaint substantial and the complaint credible and therefore agreed to file the complaint along with Mr. Go,” Jimenez said in a statement.
In his complaint, Go said the respondents deliberately blocked the delivery of gravel to be used for the continuation of the construction of 147-meter concrete runway of the Marinduque Airport, an P8.95 million development project awarded to Sargasso by the Department of Transportation and Communications (DOTC).
Go alleged that there has been a dubious delay in the issuance of the necessary delivery permits “so a contractor of choice will take over the project.”
“The project was delayed because of personal interest of the Marinduque officials,” Go said.

Go further recounted that after Sargasso was able to obtain the necessary permits from the DOTC as well as from the provincial mining regulatory board, the construction work was still blocked by the provincial officials.
Go said he wrote letters to the offices of Reyes and Bacorro inquiring about the cause of the delay of the resumption of construction work and requesting for an investigation and hearing. However, the two officials allegedly did not act on his request.
Go, in his complaint, also urged the Office of the Ombudsman to issue a preventive suspension order against the accused while the investigation of their case is ongoing. —Elizabeth Marcelo/KG, GMA News

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