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Monday, June 24, 2019

Benguet board members deny receiving ‘payola’

BENGUET Board Members have asked Governor Crescencio Pacalso to create a task force to investigate the alleged “payola” given to officials in the province by chicken dung traders in Tublay.

This developed after a concerned trader submitted a letter to the Provincial Board of the alleged payola given by operators of the chicken dung in the municipality.

“We have heard that part of the parking fees collected from us chicken dung vendors in Tublay are being given to some board members in the province. This issue was raised during the meeting with Board Member Nestor Fongwan Jr. at BAPTC last 22 March 2018. Can we be clarified with this issue,” the letter stated.

Fongwan Jr. in his privilege speech said issues besetting the truckers were discussed with Ariel Maliacos, informing him that since the quarantine ordinance of the province, the parking fees collected by operators in Tublay went up from P10 to P12 per sack.

From the P12, it was alleged that a 30 centavos quarantine fee will be collected while the P1.70 will allegedly go to the board members and other provincial officials.

Parking manager Melecio Orig said there is no parking fee collection going to the Provincial Board members.

Orig said the P12 parking fee will be allocated for maintenance (P2.70), municipal government (P1.50), province (30 centavos), parking fee (P3.50), porter (P1), and permit (P1).

Board Member Juan Nazarro said collection of fees should be in the designated checkpoint of the quarantine based on the ordinance by the province.

“A private individual cannot collect taxes or fees for the government,” said Nazarro.

Board Member Jim Botiwey added Orig will be vulnerable to suit from municipal and provincial government if he is not deputize to collect.

Committee chair on agriculture Robert Namoro also denounced the allegation.

“We are disturbed, we are not receiving any centavo. This has been dragging for so long. We reiterate that we do not receive any single centavo coming from chicken dung trade,” said Namoro.
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