Last Updated on
A Facebook page named “Usaping Bayan-Narra” exposed a week ago a purported copy of an official receipt issued by the Municipal Treasurer’s Office of Narra to Citi Nickel Mines Corporation for P200,000
In “Sponsorship – Paskuhan 2019 (Pyrotechnic and Employees Gifts)” raising questions of misconduct.
Netizens cited different opinions, some saying that the page is managed by political rivals of Danao while some are convinced that the town mayor has a poor and inefficient set of consultants alongside him.
“Maliwanag na paglabag sa Anti-Graft [Law] yan at sa ‘No Gift’ policy ng sa mga opisina ng gobyerno! Ignorance of the law excuses no one kahit mayor ka pa,” Rodel Gabil, a netizen commented.
“Wag natin lahat isisi kay Mayor, sadyang may mga tao sa paligid niya na ýun ang nag-eexecute at nag-uutos. Si Mayor ay pumipirma lang baka indi niya binasa kung ano mga pinipirmahan niya pero sa isang banda dapat ýun ang priority niya ang office work, ang mag-isip at mag-execute hindi ýung pirma na lang siya ng pirma na hindi niya alam context nang pinipirmahan niya,” Mika Evangelista, another netizen, said.
The said sponsorship, as discussed by the legislative council of Narra on their previous session, was originally intended for Palay Festival 2019 but due to some reasons, the mining company wasn’t able to release it in time for the festival.
The P200,000-sponsorship was allegedly received by the Narra Mayor’s Office on November 28, according to Narra Vice Mayor Crispin Lumba in an interview Monday.
“Nalaman lang natin na mayroong perang ganito noong session namin noong 16 (December), na mayroon daw binigay. Hiningian namin ng OR, doon namin nalaman,” Lumba said.
According to Lumba, this is a clear violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and the town’s chief executive may be subjected to an administrative case.
“Graft and corrupt practices ýan eh. Violation ýan. Okay lang kung nilagay lang ay sponsorship, walang problema ýun. Eh pina-specify at nilagyan ng Christmas gifts sa employees, eh mali na ýun,” Lumba said.
The public post of Usaping Bayan- Narra also brought row among employees of the Narra Municipal Hall.
Maxima Garcellan of the local Municipal Treasurer’s Office, during the flag ceremony last Monday, demanded for the page administrator to reveal himself and state his reason as to why the official receipt was leaked online.
Employees from the offices of Local Treasury Office, Accounting Office and the Sangguniang Bayan are in confusion on who exposed the receipt online.
Lumba, on the other hand, denied any knowledge on whoever uploaded the receipt though they have been accused by the Accounting Office of doing so.
The Vice Mayor also added that they will take measures to address the accusations against them.
“Wala akong personal knowledge,” Lumba said. “Sa Sanggunian, wala man sana kaming aksiyon para dito. Eh ngayong parang kami ay pinagbintangan, mag-uusap kami rito. Puwede naman naming ipa-grievance or idiretso sa proper offices.”
“Ipasuweldo nalang daw sa mga JO, ‘yun pala earlier mayroon na palang pera. Bakit tinatago? At bakit pa sila nag-request sa amin ng budget kung mayroon na pala silang hawak na pera, di ba? Nalaman lang namin na may pera noong 16 kasi may pina-approve na naman sila sa amin na kasama sa gagastusan sa pa-basketball nila na hindi din nila pinaalam sa amin na may pa liga pala sila. Nauna na ýung kalesa sa kabayo. Isang buwan na pala na andiyan sakanila ang pera wala silang sinasabi,” Lumba added.
According to Section 2 of R.A 3019, or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, “Receiving any gift” includes the act of accepting directly or indirectly a gift from a person other than a member of the public officer’s immediate family, in behalf of himself or of any member of his family or relative within the fourth civil degree, either by consanguinity or affinity, even on the occasion of a family celebration or national festivity like Christmas, if the value of the gift is under the circumstances manifestly excessive, followed by Section 3 (b) Directly or indirectly requesting or receiving any gift, present, share, percentage, or benefit, for himself or for any other person, in connection with any contract or transaction between the Government and any other party, wherein the public officer in his official capacity has to intervene under the law.
According to Section 9 of the same law, any public officer or private person committing any of the unlawful acts or omissions shall be punished with imprisonment for not less than six years and one month nor more than fifteen years, perpetual disqualification from public office.
Palawan Daily News has been trying to get the side of Mayor Danao but the latter has not replied.