Ombudsman files graft rap vs ex-lawmaker over PDAF anomaly

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Oct 29 2018 11:15 AM | Updated as of Oct 29 2018 11:55 AM

MANILA - (UPDATE) The Office of the Ombudsman has charged former Iloilo 5th District Rep. Rolex Suplico with one count of graft at the Sandiganbayan for his alleged misuse of P14.7 million of his Priority Development Assistance Fund in 2007.

The case was approved for filing by former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales on June 29, 2018 but was filed by Ombudsman Samuel Martires who re-approved the information on October 11, 2018.

Suplico supposedly released P14.7 million of his PDAF funds to AARON Foundation Philippines through the defunct Technology Livelihood and Resource Center.

Former TLRC Director General Antonio Ortiz and AARON Foundation President Alfredo Ronquillo were also included in the charge sheet.

Suplico, who is currently in Manila, said he is willing to face the case but has yet to see the complaint. 

The Ombudsman said AARON foundation was ineligible to receive PDAF as it lacked a business permit but the TLRC still released the funds “based merely on the endorsement of Suplico and/or Ortiz”.

There was also no public bidding held, a violation of the Government Procurement Act.

The Ombudsman also said there was “utter lack of effort to ensure the implementation of the projects and the liquidation of the public funds thereby causing undue injury to the government” on the part of Suplico.

The Ombudsman recommended that bail be set at P30,000 for each of the accused individuals.