Ex-ESamar lawmaker, gov rapped over fertilizer deal

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THE Office of the Ombudsman has found basis to charge former Eastern Samar Rep. Marcelino Libanan, former Gov. Clotilde Salazar and several others before the Sandiganbayan over the alleged anomalous procurement of fertilizers in 2004.

In a 14-page resolution, the Ombudsman found probable cause to file one count of graft case against Libanan, then-provincial agriculturist Jesus Agda, and Cecilia Apostol and Kevin Ed Apostol then-representatives of AKAME Marketing International (AKAME).

Facing indictment for two counts of graft were Salazar; then-provincial accountant Vener Dulfo; then-bids and awards committee (BAC) chairman Vilma Bormate; then-BAC vice chairman Necitas Ponferrada, then-BAC members Samson Nervez, Reynaldo Dorado, Manuel Japzon; Edilberto Apostol, then-owner and general manager of AKAME, and its representative Mary Jane Fabian.

The matter stemmed from a complaint alleging that three separate transactions were entered into with AKAME for the procurement of NBEM fertilizers through direct contracting.


The Ombudsman added that the fertilizers were not registered with the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority at the time of the procurement and were procured from a non-licensed company.

Meanwhile, the charges of malversation of public funds and through falsification against them were dismissed for lack of evidence.

REINA TOLENTINO

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