‘Rivals’ sue ex-brgy chief for failing to return vehicle

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Thursday, February 6, 2014


A FORMER chief of Barangay Day-as, Cebu City is facing a complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman-Visayas for allegedly using a vehicle issued by the City Government even if he is no longer in office.

Rey Ellery Cañada was accused by his neighbor Roberto Espina of personally driving the Toyota Hilux (SKV-439) entrusted to Day-as Councilor Marilyn Bernal.

“The vehicle, being a public property, is for official use only,” Espina said in his affidavit.

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For allowing Cañada to use the Hilux, Bernal is named the complaint for allegedly
violating the Anti-graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

Cañada’s successor, Barangay Day-as Captain Jerome Puerto, also accused him of harassment and arrogance.

Lawyer Julius Caesar Entise filed the complaint against Cañada before the anti-graft office for malversation of public property.

He showed reporters pictures of the vehicle being used by the former barangay official.

But Cañada said the move against him is “purely political harassment.”

He said the vehicle is parked outside his house because there is no parking space in Bernal’s residence. The councilor also reportedly asks him oftentimes to drive because she doesn’t know how.

He also used the vehicle to facilitate the retrieval and return of the properties owned by the Cebu City Government to the General Services Office (GSO).

He said he also used the vehicle, with Bernal’s approval, “to wind up all unliquidated advances and transactions with the Cebu City Government of the previous Barangay administration and facilitate follow-up transactions regarding (Bernal’s) constituents.”

Mayor Michael Rama, he said, entrusted the vehicle to Bernal because he has “trust and confidence” in the official.

“What they’re doing to me now only shows they don’t now anything about their jobs,” Cañada said.

He also said Puerto allegedly refused to sign and accept the document that lists the properties of the City and barangay during the turnover ceremony last Dec. 1.

Puerto allegedly made the move at the advice of two councilors.

Cañada and Bernal are allies of Mayor Rama, while Puerto is supported by former congressman Tomas Osmeña’s party.

In the barangay council, Cañada has four allies. Puerto only has three seats.

Last Dec. 6, Cañada said GSO personnel went to the barangay hall and tried to retrieve all the City-owned properties, but failed because Puerto’s men allegedly hid some of them.

Among the things that were returned to the City Government were only a multi-cab, refrigerator, and television.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on February 06, 2014.

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