By Genalyn Kabiling
Malacañang has lauded the Office of the Ombudsman’s decision to indict former Transportation Secretary Joseph Abaya and several others for the alleged anomalous MRT-3 maintenance contract.
“It’s about time and we appreciate that,” Presidential Spokesman Harry Roque said during a press conference in Cagayan de Oro City.
Roque said the Ombudsman’s move would hopefully hold accountable the persons accused of violating the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
“It’s about time po na magkaroon ng pananagutan lalo na doon sa mandarambong naman ‘no ng pondo para sa MRT na ngayon po ay nagbibigay ng talaga namang napakalaking pahirap sa ating mga mananakay [It’s about time to hold accountable those abused the funds for the MRT which has become a huge burden to commuters],” he added.
The Office of the Ombudsman has found probable cause to charge Abaya and several others for graft over MRT-3 contract awarded to Busan Joint Venture.
The company was allegedly not technically, legally or financially capable to take on the long-term maintenance contract for MRT. The respondents, however, still decided to award the contract to the firm.
With the indictment of Abaya for the MRT mess, Roque said he would have the whistleblower who exposed the railway anomaly “available now.”
Roque earlier disclosed that whistleblowers have started cooperating with the government in the grafts raps being prepared for former transport executives in connection with the MRT deals.