Gov't lawyers insist Misuari involved in 'ghost' purchases

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 03 2018 02:57 PM

MANILA - Government prosecutors insist it was former Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao Governor Nur Misuari and not his successor, Parouk Hussin, who should be held liable for ghost purchases of educational materials in the ARMM. 

In the opposition of the prosecution to the motion to dismiss filed by Misuari, details of the transactions such as requisition and issue vouchers dated December 21, 2000 and January 24, 2001, both approved by Misuari, were listed.

The resulting purchase orders and disbursement vouchers were likewise supposedly approved by Misuari. 

“Clearly, based on the foregoing documents, accused Misuari’s participation in the said anomalous transactions was indispensable as the approving authority,” Deputy Special Prosecutor Omar Sagadal said. 

Misuari was charged by the Office of the Ombudsman with two counts of graft and two counts of malversation with falsification of documents for the allegedly anomalous purchase of educational materials amounting to P77 million during his time as ARMM governor. 

In his motion to dismiss, Misuari linked Hussin to payments made to the contractors. 

The prosecution however emphasized that the claims of Misuari are a matter of defense, which should be tackled during trial.

“The grounds relied upon by the accused are questions of fact which should be established by evidence during the trial proper,” the prosecution said in its opposition filed before the Sandiganbayan 3rd Division.

The prosecution also insisted there was no inordinate delay in the filing of the cases against Misuari as there was “no prejudice or anxiety can be caused to him” before he was officially notified of the complaint only on January 5, 2018.

Misuari had said his right to speedy disposition of his cases was violated as it took the Ombudsman more than four years to resolve and file his cases at the Sandiganbayan.