Ombudsman junks Dato plunder raps

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales approved the dismissal of the complaint filed against Representatives Dato Arroyo and former President and now Pampanga Representative Gloria Macapagal Arroyo in connection with the infrastructure projects in Libmanan, Camarines Sur.
Dato Arroyo
Dato Arroyo
The two Arroyos were accused of incurring ill-gotten wealth from the Skybridge 1 and 2 and from the Libmanan-Cabusao Dam.

The 28-page investigation Report said that funding for the projects did not come from the President’s Social Fund or from her son’s Priority Development Assistance Fund or PDAF.

Complainants in these cases that were filed last year was lawyer Roberto “Argee” Guevarra, Renecio  “Luke” Espiritu, Jr., Jose Aaron Pedrosa and Juliano Fernando Guiang.

They averred in their complaint  that then President Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo gave her son, Dato unwarranted benefits, when the former allegedly announced that a total of P3 billion worth of projects would be allocated to finance the bid for Congress of Dato, last May 2010 elections.

The report said that there was no evidence that the two amassed, accumulated , or acquired ill-gotten wealth directly or through their subordinates in the National Irrigation Administration and the 

Department of Public Works and Highways, because the dam was already included in the NIA’s 2008 procurement plans. The sky bridge projects were also already included in the DPWH’s project scheme in 2009.

“Nor was there a showing that respondents demanded and received the amount not less than P50 Million as “SOP” from the projects,” it said.

Meanwhile, the P700 Million Libmanan-Cabusao Dam project which covers a 10-kilometer diversion canal and other structures to service 4,000 hectares, was suspended by the NIA in 2019 because of the strong opposition local groups.

Sky bridge 1 and 2, worth P1.2 billion faced implementation problems.—BICOLSTANDARD.COM

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