• Ex-Baseco officials face new graft raps

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    THE Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) has filed another graft and corruption charge before the Office of the Ombudsman against former officials of the sequestered Bataan Shipyard and Engineering Co. (Baseco).

    The new case for misappropriating funds worth P3.6 million was filed on Tuesday against retired naval captain Proceso Maligalig and Gerard Rabonza, who respectively served as president and director of the government-owned and -operated company, the PCGG said in a statement released on Thursday.

    The PCGG said Northstar Transport Facilities, Inc., (NTFI), a private corporation, which was controlled by Rabonza, entered into a contract of lease in 2006 with Baseco over a 17,896 square meter portion of Baseco’s property in Port Area, Manila known as Engineering Island.

    The commission added that NTFI stopped paying the lease in 2009 and by March 2010, NTFI owed Baseco P4.9 million.

    The PCGG stressed that without obtaining Baseco board approval, Maligalig agreed to a P3.6-million settlement of NTFI’s debt. But the money was never remitted to Baseco, the commission added.

    Furthermore, NTFI’s payment was not recorded in Baseco’s books despite Maligalig acknowledging the receipt of the amount and no official receipt for the transaction was also issued, a fact that showed Rabonza was complicit in the misappropriation, the PCGG said.

    The PCGG emphasized that “Maligalig and Rabonza’s misappropriation of Baseco’s funds caused undue injury to Baseco and the government by impairing the value of subject properties under government administration.”

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