Palawan Gov. Jose Alvarez on Thursday questioned the filing of a graft complaint against him and several others before the Office of the Ombudsman in connection with a bulk water supply project (BWSP) in Cagayan de Oro City in 2004.
Alvarez was named respondent being the officer of Rio Verde Water Consortium Inc. that carried out the project in a complaint filed by Michelle Fox, who cited a 2013 Commission on Audit (COA) report as basis for the complaint filed on Wednesday.
In a statement, the governor pointed out that “there is nothing in the said COA audit report that specifically and categorically points to the participation, complicity or involvement, in any manner, of Gov. Alvarez, or any of the [then-]officers of Rio Verde Water Consortium Inc., who were named in the article, with the [then-]officers of the Cagayan de Oro City Water District in the alleged violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (Republic Act 3019) or the Government Procurement Law (RA 9184).”
He said “[t]he motive behind the complaint is dubious even as it is revealing.”
Alvarez pointed out that Fox ran against his daughter, Mayor Pie Alvarez, in the May 2016 elections but “lost miserably by a sweeping margin or more than 45 percent of total votes cast…”
The governor said the project was awarded “following an open, transparent and competitive public bidding held on November 18, 2004.”