Mayor Reynaldo Parojinog Sr. of Ozamiz (Misamis Occidental) and his daughter Vice Mayor Nova Princess Parojinog-Echavez on Monday posted bail for their provisional liberty for the graft case they are facing before the Sandiganbayan’s Fifth Division.
The case against the two officials, whom President Rodrigo Duterte linked to the illegal drug trade last year, stemmed from the award of a gymnasium renovation project to the Parojinog & Sons Construction Company in 2008.
The court found basis to try the case and ordered the issuance of warrants for their arrest last week.
Accompanied by their lawyer, the two officials posted P30,000 bail each before the arrest warrants were served.
The Office of the Ombudsman filed the case last November alleging that the mayor had financial or pecuniary interest in the construction company which was “owned by his family” when the said company participated as a bidder and bagged the project.
Parojinog sought the dismissal the case for lack of probable cause, saying that he is not a partner nor investor to the company which, it said, is a duly registered partnership between Echavez and her sibling.
In a ruling promulgated on January 31, the court denied the respondents’ plea and said in part that it “is convinced that the prosecution presented ample evidence to support a finding of probable cause, hence the accused must be…brought to trial.”
“The averment of the accused as to the absence of any direct or indirect financial or pecuniary interest in Parojinog & Sons Construction Company is a matter of defense which is best left for the Court to resolve after a full-blown trial of the case,” it said.