Ombuds presses cases vs CDO mayor Moreno

THE OFFICE of the Ombudsman found probable cause to indict former Misamis Oriental Governor, now Cagayan de Oro City Mayor, Oscar Moreno, and four others before the Sandiganbayan for graft charges.

Others included in the complaint are Acting Provincial Accountant Divina Bade, Acting Provincial Budget Officer Elmer Wabe, Provincial Administrator Patrick Gabutina and Assistant Provincial Engineer Rolando Pacuribot.

The respondents were charged for violation Section 3 (e) of the Republic Act 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act).

Records show that from Oct. 2, 2009 to Oct. 2, 2010, respondents approved, without undergoing any public bidding, the rental of one unit of excavator from Equiprent Corporation (Equiprent) amounting to P2,963,520.

Respondents instead resorted to negotiated procurement as an alternative method of procurement and cited the typhoon and weather disturbances that hit the province from 2009 to 2012.

Several procurement irregularities were also noted such as the contractor’s non-registration with the Philippine Government Electronic Procurement System and the non-submission of documents required by the Government Procurement Reform Act.

Upon audit, the Commission on Audit (COA) issued a notice of suspension dated June 6, 2014, naming respondents as the persons liable for “the deficiencies in the required transaction processes and the lack of the necessary supporting documents.” The COA noted that the NS has already ripened into a disallowance per Notice of Disallowance No. 2014-018-101 (10)-SplAudit dated Nov. 10, 2014.

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, in a resolution dated Feb. 23 2018, said that “their acts constitute evident bad faith and they should be held liable for giving unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference to Equiprent.”

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