2 LTFRB staff face dismissal for extortion
MANILA, Philippines – Two Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB) employees face possible dismissal from service for alleged corruption, the Department of Transportation (DOTr) said on Friday, May 29.
Amelita dela Cruz and Jean Gunda, both from LTFRB-National Capital Region (NCR), are facing complaints for allegedly extorting money in exchange for vehicle franchises.
Gunda allegedly asked P175,000 from a certain Rogelio Colita, a taxi driver, to grant him a franchise to operate in April 2016. After a year of follow-ups, no franchise was granted.
LTFRB Central Office assisted Colita in filing an estafa case against Gunda at the Quezon City Prosecutors Office on Wednesday, May 23.
Meanwhile, Dela Cruz was involved in a video extorting P250,000 from an unnamed complainant in exchange for a UV Express franchise.
Dela Cruz, a transportation development officer, is facing a complaint before the Ombudsman for conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service, dishonesty, and grave misconduct and falsification. The complaint was filed in November 2017.
LTFRB Chairman Martin Delgra ordered the investigation and filing of administrative cases against the concerned employees. Delgra said he will not allow such actions to pass.
"Patunay ito na wala tayong kinukunsinti. Mataas o mababa ang posisyon, basta may iligal na aktibidad, tayo mismo ang magsusuplong sa kanila," he said. (This is proof that we are not condoning such actions. Regardless of the position, as long as there are illegal activities, we will be the ones to file complaints against them.)
Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade urged the public to refrain from being involved in corrupt dealings as well, and to follow the right processes.
"'Wag niyo ilapit sa tukso ang mga empleyado kasi tayo po mismo ang naglalagay sa mga sarili natin sa alanganin. Gawin natin ang tama. Paalala lang sa lahat: kung ayaw ninyo kaming maging korap, 'wag niyo kaming korapin," said Tugade.
(Don't tempt employees because you will be putting yourselves in an awkward situation. Let's do what is right. Just a reminder to everyone: if you don't want us to be corrupt, don't corrupt us.)
Just recently, two top Department of Transportation (DOTr) regional officials were suspended over corruption allegations.
On Monday, May 21, President Rodrigo Duterte fired Railways Assistant Secretary Mark Tolentino for speaking with one of the President's sisters for an alleged deal. "Namedropping and seeking the assistance of the President, his family, or any other influential individual, either for government projects or for personal gain, will never be tolerated," said the DOTr in a statement. – Rappler.com