Former aerospace agency chief faces graft for questionable appointees, gas subsidies

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Feb 13 2018 06:02 PM

MANILA - The Office of the Ombudsman has charged former Philippine Aerospace Development Corporation president Roberto Navida at the Sandiganbayan for allegedly appointing "unqualified" people and for allocating a gas allowance for his subordinates.

The Ombudsman charged Navida with one count of the violation of Article 244 of the Revised Penal Code for appointing Neon Ebuen, Ma. Lorena Aquino, Corazon Aguinaldo, Bello Indemne, Darwin Paraguison, Roque Espedillon Jr., Joymee San Luis, Flordelino Fahigal, and Josefa Cabangangan.

Navida allegedly violated Executive Order No. 366 or the Rationalization Program for appointing them despite "knowing fully well that they are not qualified for the position for lack of eligibility or experience."

Navida also faces one count of graft for paying the salaries of the "unqualified" individuals and other personnel identified as Richard Lazaro and Richard Glenn De Galicia. Their combined salaries amounted to P876,833.38 in 2005.

Another count of graft was filed against Navida for allegedly allocating fuel subsidies worth P144,567.68 in December 2005 for privately owned vehicles of 9 personnel.

The individuals were given “unwarranted benefits, preference, or advantage” as they were already receiving monthly representation and transportation allowance, the Ombudsman's complaint read.

Navida was also charged with one count of graft and one count of violation of the Government Procurement Act for the supposed purchase of parts, and repair and maintenance of vehicles from June to December 2005. The bill for the unauthorized expense amounted to P295,345.69.

The Office of the Ombudsman recommended a P30,000 bail for each of the charges, except for the charge for violation of E.O No. 366, where bail is not required.

Navida headed the government agency set to be abolished by President Rodrigo Duterte as it is not able to fulfill its mandate, including designing a plane.