By Czarina Nicole O. Ong
The Office of the Ombudsman has found probable cause to charge former Carigara, Leyte Mayor Anlie Apostol with one count of graft due to his involvement in the 2010 rehabilitation of the small water impounding system project.
Apostol will be charged for violation of Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019, also known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
The Ombudsman Field Investigation Office in Region 8 discovered that in 2010, the municipality received P6 million to fund the project for the repair of the small water impounding system in Barangays Binibihan, San Isidro and Paglaum.
A total of P5,417,852.82 was paid to New Leyte Ever Hardware Company for construction materials and supplies. However, the said project turned out to be fake since there was no actual delivery of supplies for the project.
Supply Officer Crescente Precia claimed that Apostol “commanded him to sign the acceptance and inspection report (AIR)” despite non-delivery of materials.
“(Apostol’s) directive to Precia to make it appear that complete delivery had already been effected had paved the way for the disbursement of public funds and payment to the supplier even without actual delivery of the procured materials/supplies,” the Ombudsman resolution read.
“By releasing the amount of P5,417,852.82 to New Leyte Ever Hardware sans delivery of the materials/supplies procured, respondent undoubtedly caused undue injury to the municipality of Carigara,” it added.
Apostol also has a related administrative case. He was found guilty of grave misconduct and ordered dismissed from the service with the accessory penalties of perpetual disqualification from holding public office, cancellation of eligibility, and forfeiture of retirement benefits. He was also barred from taking the civil service examinations.
Meanwhile, Precia was found guilty of simple misconduct and ordered suspended for three months. In the event that respondents are already separated from service, the penalty is equivalent to their salaries for one year. In Precia’s case, his penalty was converted to a fine equivalent to his salary for three months.