LANAO DEL SUR – Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales found probable cause to indict a former mayor of Binidayan, Lanao del Sur for procuring heavy equipment without public bidding, and entering into a loan agreement with the Philippine National Bank (PNB) without prior authority from the Sangguniang Bayan.
In a 13-page Resolution, Ombudsman Morales approved the filing of an Information for violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act No. 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act) against Aman Misbac Datumulok.
The Resolution narrates that on 14 February 2008, Datumulok secured a P20 million loan from the PNB for the acquisition of a brand new dump truck and wheel loader.
Contrary to the terms of the loan agreement, however, Datumulok purchased second-hand equipment from EB Ople Trading through direct contracting at prices considered grossly disadvantageous to the local government.
Documents show that public bidding was never considered as EB Ople Trading was paid for the equipment on 20 February 2008 or merely six days after the loan agreement was approved.
Ombudsman Morales stated that “Datumulok, as the local chief executive and head of the procuring entity, is tasked with the obligation and the duty of ensuring the municipality’s compliance with the laws on procurement, specifically as it involves a great amount of money for which the government will have the burden of paying.”
Meanwhile, the charge for Malversation against Datumulok was dismissed without prejudice to its re-filing on the basis of the investigation to be conducted by the Commission on Audit-ARMM and upon evaluation by the Office of the Ombudsman.
Likewise, the charges against Municipal Treasurer Acmad Tabua, PNB officials Victorio Sison and Charles De Jesus were dismissed for insufficiency of evidence.