Manila barangay execs get jail time for projector, sound system purchase

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Nov 06 2017 04:57 PM

MANILA - Officials of Barangay 500, Zone 49 of the City of Manila and a businesswoman were found guilty beyond reasonable doubt of violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act for rigging the procurement of equipment. 

In a statement from the Office of the Ombudsman, Presiding Judge Jean Marie Bacorro-Villena of the Manila Regional Trial Court sentenced Barangay Chairman Ernesto Evasco Sr., Treasurer Nemita Gonzales, and Victoria Limpio, owner of De Victoria Enterprises, to 6 to 9 years of imprisonment. 

Members of the Bids and Awards Committee, namely Jose Marie Evasco, Ariel Policarpio, Rolando Policarpio, and May Sahagon were meantime sentenced to 6 to 7 years imprisonment. 

State prosecutors said that prior to the actual bidding scheduled in April 2008, Evasco, Sr. and Gonzales approved a purchase order on March 17, 2008 indicating De Victoria Enterprises as the supplier of a projector and sound system amounting to P138,128. 

The award to the supplier was also approved despite the absence of a business permit as Limpio only submitted to the BAC a certification from the Department of Trade and Industry. 

The Ombudsman emphasized that the anti-graft law prohibits public officials from performing official duties with manifest partiality, evident bad faith, or gross inexcusable negligence causing undue injury to any party, including the government, or giving any private party unwarranted benefits, advantage, or preference. 

Aside from the penalty of imprisonment, the barangay officials were also imposed the accessory penalty of perpetual disqualification from public office.