By Vanne Elaine Terrazola
Senator Antonio Trillanes IV on Wednesday filed a resolution calling for a probe on the possible conflict of interest committed by special assistant to the president Christopher “Bong” Go for the contracts bagged by his relatives’ construction companies.
Trillanes, in his Senate Resolution 889, said he seeks to come up with a remedial legislation to prevent conflict of interest arising from the government contracts obtained by the kin of public officials and employees.
He wanted the measure to be referred to the Senate Committee on Civil Service, Government Reorganization and Professional Regulation, which he chairs.
The opposition lawmaker cited reports of the Philippine Center of Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) which found that Davao region received the most funds from the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) for infrastructure projects in 2017.
The resolution noted that top contractors for the Davao infrastructure projects were CLTG Builders and Alfrego Builders and Supplies supposedly owned by Go’s father and stepbrother.
CLTG Builders, according to the PCIJ report, won a total of P1.85 billion worth of projects from the government in a span of 10 years from 2007-2017, and bagged another P2.7 billion for a joint venture with four other contractors, including Alfrego Builders in 2017 alone. But CLTG failed to finish the joint-venture projects within the original deadline.
Trillanes also particularly noted the “coincidence” that CLTG matches the initials of the special assistant to the President.
In calling for the probe, he cited Article 7 Section 13 of the 1987 Constitution which prohibits government officials, including their assistants from engaging in activities with conflict of interest while in service. He said it is “urgent” to look into the issue.
“Government officials and employees are held with higher sets of standards. They are expected at all times to put the interest of the public above their own,” Trillanes said in his resolution.
Go earlier tagged the report as “fake news” to deny the findings of PCIJ’s research. The PCIJ, on the other hand, stood by its report and bared attempts to get Go’s side to no avail.