MANILA, Philippines – The Office of the Ombudsman on Tuesday, October 11, filed a graft case against former Commission on Elections (Comelec) Chairman Benjamin Abalos Sr over alleged irregularities in the acquisition of motor vehicles for the agency in 2003.
According to Assistant Special Prosecutor Marichelle Corpuz, the former poll chief violated Section 3 (e) of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
This was after he approved Comelec’s purchase of two Toyota Revo VX 200 from Toyota Pasong Tamo Incorporated without public bidding. The vehicles were worth P1,711,418.19.
Corpuz said shopping or canvassing as a mode of purchase for motor vehicles is now allowed under RA 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act.
A bail bond of P30,000 has been recommended by the Ombudsman.
Former Comelec director Eduardo Mejos and administrative officer Aileen Maqueda of the Finance Services Department were identified as principal witnesses against Abalos.
Other cases had been filed against Abalos for offenses allegedly committed during his term as elections chief.