Ex-Rizal gov Ynares charged with graft for overpriced fertilizers
MANILA, Philippines – Former Rizal governor Casimiro Ynares Jr was charged with 4 counts of graft for the alleged overpricing of fertilizers purchased by the Rizal provincial government in 2004 and 2005.
The information filed by the Ombudsman on February 6 and released to media on Friday, February 10, finds sufficient ground to charge Ynares of the crime of graft.
According to the investigation, in November 2004, Ynares entered into a direct contract with Feshan Philippines to provide the province with 1,266 bottles of organic fertilizers.
The contract did not undergo public bidding, according to the investigation.
Moreover, the Rizal government paid Feshan P1,500 per bottle despite the availability of another fertilizer sold for only P176. The provincial government paid Feshan P1.8 million. With the existence of a cheaper brand, the prosecutors say there was an overprice of P1.676 million.
In March 2005, the Rizal government under Ynares did the same. It again entered into a direct contract with Feshan to buy 1,189 bottles of organic fertilizers worth P1,500 per bottle.
Another foliar fertilizer, which was available then, was sold at P187 per bottle, bringing the overprice to P1.561 million.
Ynares, along with 9 other provincial officials, were charged of graft.
By favoring Feshan, the officials violated section 3(e) of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act which penalizes the “giving any private party any unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference.”
Because of the overpricing, the officials violated section 3(g) of the law which penalizes contracts that are “grossly disadvantageous” to the government.
Also charged are provincial accountant Cecilia Almajose, provincial administrator Virgilio Esguerra, provincial agriculturist Danilo Rumbawa, provincial legal officer Eduardo Torres, provincial engineer Danilo Collantes, department head Eugene Durusan, assistant department head Romulo Arcilla, Jr, and assistant budget officer Victorina Olea.
Feshan representative Mallyne Araos was also charged.
Bail is set at P30,000 for each count of graft, or a total of P120,000 for each of the accused. – Rappler.com