CITY OF SAN FERNANDO -- Pampanga Governor Lilia Pineda warned the public Monday, April 10, especially families who seek medical and financial assistance from the Provincial Government, against possible “Capitol” fixers who are out to prey on unsuspecting victims.
Pineda said these fixers feign and introduce themselves as government employees or as direct contacts to the governor’s office to assure the victim or the members of their families that they can guarantee financial assistance in two to three days’ time in exchange for a certain amount of money.
Recently, Julio Esguerra Paquiao, Jr. fell victim to these fixers and paid P20,000 with the hopes of having his brother discharged after being hospitalized at the Mt. Carmel Medical Center in the City of San Fernando.
Paquiao identified one Rodalyn Yumul Ignacio and her mother Digna Ignacio as the persons constantly transacting with them.
Rodalyn posed as a Department of Social Welfare and Development staff and promised to pay the entire hospital bill with the aid of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office.
He also reported that Rodalyn instructed Paquiao to submit medical documents and a “partial payment” of P20,000 to supposedly speed up the settlement of hospital bills.
“Nagbigay po kami ng pera sa kanya kasi sabi po nya (Rodalyn Ignacio) nagtatrabaho po siya kay Nanay (Governor Lilia Pineda) kaya nagtiwala po kami (We gave our money to her because she [Rodalyn Ignacio] said she works for Governor Lilia ‘Nanay’ Pineda, that’s why we trusted her),” Paquiao said.
Later, it was discovered that Rodalyn proceeded to the governor’s office bringing valid medical documents gathered from the victim and claimed the medical assistance amounting to P10,000 posing as the victim’s wife.
Paquiao and his family went directly to the governor’s office to seek help after weeks of no calls and text messages from the suspects, which intensified their suspicion.
“Sa ganitong sitwasyon, ginamit nila ang pangalan ni governor para manloko, dapat talaga silang managot (In this situation, they used the name of governor to deceive others, they should pay for their crimes),” he said.
The governor reiterated that no amount should be imposed on anyone seeking for any kind of assistance from the Provincial Government and that official transactions are done at all government offices with authorized personnel only.
The general public are encouraged to report any suspicious individual or transaction to the Provincial Government in the war against fixers, syndicates and fake professionals, Pineda added.
The victim has now filed a complaint against the two suspects and will be facing charges violating Republic Act No. 9485 otherwise known as the “Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007” with the possibility of imprisonment not exceeding six years or a fine not less than P20,000 but not more than P200,000 or both at the discretion of the court. (Ma. Reina Len Luna/Pampanga PIO)