Cebu guv's arraignment moved to March 21-A A +A
Monday, March 11, 2013
MANILA -- The Sandiganbayan Second Division on Monday decided to move the arraignment of Cebu Governor Gwendolyn Garcia to March 21.
Garcia is facing two counts of graft and one malversation charge filed against her by the Office of the Ombudsman over the alleged anomalous purchase of a 24.92-hectare property in Tiga-an, Naga City.
Bought in 2008, the property is worth P98,926,800 but a major part of the it was found to be submerged under seawater.
Her arraignment was previously set at 1:30 p.m. on Tuesday.
A one page order released by the anti-graft court rescheduled Garcia's arraignment despite objections by government prosecutors who insisted that it should push through in the absence of a temporary restraining order or an injunction from the Supreme Court.
"Accused has not shown that she stands to suffer grave and irreparable injury should this Honorable Court proceeds with the arraignment on March 12, 2013," the prosecutors said.
Garcia's counsel Tranquil Salvador III said earlier Monday that the Sandiganbayan decided last Friday not to push through with the arraignment to allow the SC to resolve their petition for certiorari with a prayer of temporary restraining order.
The High Court will hold its en banc session on Tuesday but it was not immediately clear if the petition is included in the agenda.
"We are hoping that the SC will take this up soon," Salvador told Sun.Star.
Salvador said Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales committed grave abuse of discretion when she came out with the resolutions indicting Garcia for the prohibited acts.
Also charged with graft are former Provincial Board member Juan Bolo, former Provincial Assessor Anthony Sususco, Provincial Treasurer Roy Salubre, Provincial Engineer Eulogio Pelayre, Provincial Budget Officer Emme Gingoyon and even the relatives of the Balilis. (Kathrina Alvarez/Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)