Officials hit mayor anew for 'anomalies'-A A +A
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- Mexico officials on Monday lashed at Mayor Teddy Tumang anew for alleged anomalous transactions amounting to some P50 million dating back 2008, even as a team from the Commission Audit (COA) started its special audit conference morning of that day.
In an afternoon press conference in this city, Councilor Rex Calma led the officials in presenting documents that they claimed they themselves acquired from sources.
The documents ranged from receipts, deeds of sale, journal entries, disbursement vouchers and photographs.
"It's been almost a year since we filed a plunder case against Mayor Tumang and we are very happy that the COA is conducting the audit now. But we were surprised when we were provided with these documents that will prove the anomalies. Garapalan ng masyado. As legislators, we want the people of Mexico to know what is really happening at para maging malinis na ang Mexico," said Calma.
Among the allegations are the purchase of overpriced vehicles for 20 barangays, three department heads, dump trucks and millions worth of "undelivered" medicines.
"The vehicles priced at P200,000 were procured from Henline Enterprises which documents -- even the phone numbers listed under the firm -- the mayor owns. Disbursement vouchers and check releases in millions of pesos were not signed by the municipal accountant but the process was fast and done in three days. Also, the vehicles, we found out, are now registered in Balanga, Bataan from their previous registration in Mindanao. The documents bear the signature of a witness who is not connected with the Municipal Government and is a relative of Mayor Tumang. Even the Buyu Trading which solely provides the construction needs of the municipality is nothing but a house and just a front as we found out in records of the Department of Trade and Industry," Calma said.
He added: "Mayor Tumang could charge me with libel but he must explain reports that it was his wife February who encashed two checks amounting to P1 million each at the Development Bank of the Philippines in the last quarter of 2008. We hope COA will find out the truth."
In an interview with Tumang on Tuesday, however, the mayor denied the officials' allegations, branding them as "rehashed" and politically motivated.
"First, I do not own Henline Enterprises. Second, I challenge them to prove through documents that my wife encashed the checks. Their accusations have been merely rehashed. Besides, it is not up to them to judge me. Huwag nila akong husgahan. I never took any money from the municipal government's coffers," he told Sun.Star Pampanga.
The mayor said he welcomes the ongoing special audit conference.
"I spoke to the COA team on Monday and I told them I welcome the special audit. I am confident I will be cleared and the audit will show the reality and truth. My detractors should allow all their allegations to be taken up at this proper forum and not bring it to the forum of public opinion like media. It is not up to them to prove anything but in this on-going proper venue," he said.
He called the councilors' actions as "grandstanding", adding they are using the allegations as a platform "to debilitate me and try to weaken the candidacy of whoever I will endorse in 2013."
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on July 06, 2011.