FEBRUARY 23, 2017
Philippine stories you need to know this Thursday
News Briefs: February 23, 2017
Former PNP chief Purisima pleads not guilty to Mamasapano charges
MANILA – Dismissed Philippine National Police (PNP) chief Alan Purisima on Thursday, February 23, pleaded not guilty to charges of graft and usurpation of official functions in relation to his role in the botched elite cops operations in Mamasapano, Maguindanao.
Purisima earlier posted a P20,000 bail even before the court issued an arrest warrant.
His co-accused sacked Special Action Force (SAF) Director Getulio Napeñas was not arraigned along with Purisima because of the former's pending motion for judicial determination of probable cause.
Purisima was serving a suspension order when he allegedly still directed the anti-terrorist operation that resulted to the death of 44 Special Action Force members. – Lian Buan
Pichay on use of water utility fund: Why fault me for supporting sports?
MANILA – Former Local Water Utilities Administration chief and now Surigao del Sur Representative Prospero Pichay Jr on Thursday, February 23, pleaded not guilty to charges of graft and breach of conduct for LWUA’s P1.5 million sponsorship of a chess tournament in 2010.
The sponsorship was done despite an earlier memorandum from the agency to suspend sponsorships of sports and cultural activities due to austerity measures.
Investigators alleged that Pichay had a “financial and material” interest in LWUA’s sponsorship to the National Chess Federation of the Philippines because he was NCFP’s president and chairman at the time.
Pichay told reporters after his arraignment on Thursday that he was just doing his duty of supporting national athletes.
“I find it very peculiar that the Ombudsman had to file a case against me when we are supporting sports. In fact, because of my leadership in NCFP, a Filipino is now number two in the world in chess,” Pichay said. – Lian Buan