• Palawan gov, 9 others face graft complaint


    Palawan Governor Jose Alvarez and several others are facing a graft complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman in connection with a bulk water supply project (BWSP) in 2004.

    Alvarez was named respondent as a former officer of Rio Verde Water Consortium Inc. (RVWCI) along with other officers including Bienvenido Santos, Roberto Lozada, Chona Alvarez and Fiorella Azura.

    Also named respondents were Federico Gapuz, Raymundo Java, Sarah Borja, Sandy Bass Jr. and Francisco Mendez who were identified in the complaint as former officers of Cagayan de Oro (CDO) Water District.

    Complainant Michelle Fox, who identified herself as a resident of San Vicente in Palawan and who ran for mayor in the May 2016 elections but lost to Alvarez’ daughter Carmela, said the complaint was for “irregularities committed in the water utility related project in Cagayan de Oro.”

    Fox alleged that “[t]he respondents are all jointly liable, based on conspiracy, indispensable cooperation and their individual acts and participation, for having approved or caused the approval of the substantial amendment, first, in the BWS Agreement/Contract as against the Model Contract which was an integral part of the bidding documents, and second, in the original signed contract.”

    She cited a 2013 Commission on Audit report as basis for the complaint, which was filed on Wednesday.
    The report allegedly found upon comparison of the approved contract and the model contract “that there were revisions made… in favor of the contractor…”

    Fox also alleged that “[t]he respondents are all jointly liable… for having accommodated or cause the accommodation of the proposal of RVWCI to Revise the original Parametric Formula for the BWSP as embodied in BOD Resolution No. 010, S-05, to the disadvantage of public consumers which could be as much as P1.46 per cubic meter of water.”

    The complainant also accused the respondents of grave misconduct and gross neglect of duty.


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