Mayor: No problem with HDO as Fifa member

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Saturday, February 15, 2014


BACOLOD City Mayor Monico Puentevella said he finds no problem with his inclusion in the hold departure list of the Bureau of Immigration upon the directive of Sandiganbayan in relation with the graft and corruption case filed against him by the Office of the Ombudsman.

“No problem. You just ask permission and it is usually granted since I’m the mayor of Bacolod and doing my job. No danger of flight,” Puentevella said.

“I’m hoping that this case filed by (then) Mayor Bing (Leonardia) against me in 2007 will be decided sooner as expected,” he said.

Aside from being chief executive of Bacolod, Puentevella is also a member of the Fifa TV and Marketing Committee and is tasked to attend some of its meetings abroad by virtue of his position in the world's football governing body.

With the AFC Challenge Cup set this April in Maldives, AFC President’s Cup in May, Fifa World Cup in August in Brazil and Asian Games in September in South Korea, Puentevella is expected to have a busy schedule representing Fifa in these events.

The presence of Puentevella, as a member of the Olympic Committee of Asia and president of the Philippine Weightlifting Association, is highly needed in the Asian competitions like the upcoming Asian Games in Incheon.

Also included in the hold departure order (HDO) are Puentevella’s co-accused former Department of Education 6 Regional Director Victorino Tirol Jr., and Merryland Publishing Inc. chairman Jessie Garcia.

Fourth Division Chairman Gregory Ong, Associate Justice Jose Hernandez, and Associate Justice Maria Cristina Cornejo, in a resolution dated February 7, directed the BI to bar/prohibit the three accused from leaving the Philippines for any destination abroad, either by air or sea transportation, except by prior written permission duly secured from and granted by the Sandiganbayan.

Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on February 15, 2014.

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