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Iloilo Mayor found guilty of grave misconduct, dishonesty

Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog was found guilty of grave misconduct, serious dishonesty and conduct prejudicial to best interest of the service and was ordered dismissed from the service by Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales.
Aside from the dismissal Mabilog was also slapped with the accessory penalties of perpetual disqualification from holding public office, cancellation of eligibility, forfeiture of retirement benefits, and bar from taking the civil service examinations.
According to the Ombudsman decision the SAngguniang Panlungsod approved on April 8, 2014, a Regulation Ordinance incorporating the use of a wheel towing clamp as part of its towing ordinance.
The following year, Feb. 17, 2015, it also approved a resolution authorizing Mabilog to sign a Memorandum of Agreement (MoA) between the local government and 3L Towing Services for the implementation of the city’s clamping ordinance.
Under the MoA, 70 percent of the fines collected would be given to 3L while the remaining 30 percent would be the LGU’s share.
The 70-30 sharing scheme for the first five years will be followed by a 65-35 sharing scheme for the next five years.
On Feb. 24, 2015 a resolution was passed by the SP confirming the MoA and three days later Mabilog wrote an urgent letter to the SP informing the body of the suspension of the MoA due to “some technical issues.”
The owner of 3L, Leny Garcia on May 19, 2015, wrote Mabilog and offered to withdraw from the MoA “amid the legal issues confronting it and submit to legal processes prescribed by laws on government bidding and procurement.”
Complainant Plaridel Nava II, the SP chairman of the committee on transportation, accused Mabilog of actually owning 3L and claimed that the mayor had a direct financial interest in the MoA.
The complainant averred that “Mabilog allegedly employed his [Nava’s] services to perpetuate and consummate his [Mabilog’s] illegitimate, immoral, dishonest and underground acts and transactions with private groups and corporate personalities doing or intending to do business in the city of Iloilo by using his power and influence as the chief executive of the city government.”
He also claimed that the mayor instructed him to look for someone they could trust to stand as a dummy owner and to estimate the cost and expenditures for the proposed business venture on clamping services.
The complainant said he regularly report to Mabilog on the status of the business venture and that on June 16, 2014, Mabilog handed him P500,000.00 in cash as part of his capital contribution to the business.
The mayor also reportedly expedited the release of the business and mayor’s permits of the towing company.
With this, the Ombudsman stated that “it is undisputed that respondent entered into a MoA, on behalf of the city government with 3L for the implementation of the city’s clamping ordinance without compliance with any procurement process required under the relevant law for the selection of 3L.”
The contention of Mabilog that Garcia withdrew from the MoA thus he is excused from administrative liability was not given weight by the anti-graft court.
And said the obvious purpose of such withdrawal was to cancel the MoA in an attempt to avoid further scrutiny considering that complainant Manuel Mejorada had already filed the complaint-affidavit almost a month prior to Garcia’s letter of withdrawal.
The Field Investigation Office of the OMB-Visayas was ordered to conduct an immediate fact-finding investigation against Nava for a possible administrative case against him “as he openly admitted against his own interest, that he was the one who approached Garcia to serve as respondent’s dummy, upon the latter’s earlier instruction, to look for someone they could trust.”
In September 2017 the Ombudsman ordred the filing of graft charge against Mabilog for violation of Section 3(h) of R.A. No. 3019 for the anomalous towing deal.
R.A. No. 3019 prohibits public officials from directly or indirectly having financing or pecuniary interest in any business, contract or transaction in connection with which he intervenes or takes part in his official capacity, or in which he is prohibited by the constitution or by any law from having any interest. 

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  • YU


    YU Wednesday, 10 January 2018 04:16 Comment Link

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