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Tuesday, December 11, 2018

DILG eyes probe into cases vs. mayor

THE Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) 7 has directed its provincial counterpart to conduct a fact-finding investigation on the criminal and administrative complaints filed by a port project proponent against San Fernando Mayor Neneth Reluya.

Lawyer Rene Burdeos, DILG 7 chief, directed Jerome Gonzales, the agency’s provincial director, to conduct a probe on the complaints for grave abuse of authority, corruption and conduct unbecoming of a public official filed by Ruben Feliciano, president of First Sangat SF International Port Corp., against Reluya.

Burdeos asked Gonzales to coordinate with Feliciano for the submission of his affidavits and to submit a report in 10 days.

Feliciano’s First Sangat SF International is proposing to build a P12.5-billion private commercial port in Barangay Sangat.

Despite having the project’s groundbreaking last March, Feliciano alleged that Mayor Reluya “tried to influence and persuade” the Municipal Council to pass a resolution nullifying its previous resolution endorsing the construction of the port.

Citing the council’s resolution, Reluya then issued an executive order “stringently suspending” any construction, development and reclamation projects in the coastline of Barangay Sangat.

During the Provincial Board’s session last June 11, Reluya narrated how Feliciano and his firm implemented the port project in Barangay Sangat despite the lack of some documentary requirements.

She claimed that Feliciano’s firm has started dredging and reclamation works in the area even though he has yet to secure a permit from the Philippine Reclamation Authority.

In a statement, Feliciano clarified his firm is not conducting any reclamation or dredging activity at the project site.

“Instead, we are constructing the first phase of the port, construction of trestle/causeway connection from the shoreline to project distance, sheet pile driving, containment area, in compliance of our permit to construct the port granted by the Cebu Port Authority (CPA),” he said.

The Environmental Management Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resource has granted the project a notice to proceed, he added.

He also said that his firm had secured the environmental compliance certificate from the said agency.

Feliciano also said that CPA has given his firm the go signal to proceed with the port project after they have complied with all the necessary documentary requirements for a port with reclamation component. GMD


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