CEBU

PJ unfazed by petition to inhibit Ombud

FORMER Congressman Pablo John “PJ” Garcia has no problem if Toledo City Mayor John Osmeña wants the Office of the Ombudsman to inhibit from acting on his complaint as long as the government will investigate the alleged P210-million project anomaly.

Garcia said he was happy with the quick action of the Commission on Audit to mobilize its fraud team to look into the alleged stealing of millions of public funds through the “Clean and Green Project.”

Garcia and Osmeña are running for a seat in the third congressional district.

Garcia said the P210 million was for 4,400 workers who allegedly worked daily for six months under the clean and green program.

Garcia said authorities can easily get data on the anomaly because most of the “workers” had executive affidavits stating that they didn’t know their names were on the City’s payroll.

He said many of the names on the payroll do not exist or are fictitious. These “persons” are not even registered with the Commission on Election as voters.

“If the 4,400 alleged workers who allegedly worked daily and paid through payrolls is true, there would be thousands of workers cleaning Toledo City every day. Morag rally,” Garcia said.

Under the law, Garcia said no money from a local government unit will be released without the recommendations of the human resource officer, city accountant and city treasurer and the final approval of Osmeña.

Garcia said that considering that several families in Toledo City are living in poverty, wasting P210 million for this ghost project is anti-people and those Toledo City officials involved must be terminated from service immediately.

Last Thursday, March 14, Osmeña’s counsel endorsed a motion asking the anti-graft office to investigate the mayor and other city officials because Deputy Ombudsman for the Visayas Paul Elmer Clemente and Garcia were classmates in law school. EOB


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