MANILA - The Office of the Ombudsman has filed graft and malversation charges at the Sandiganbayan against former Bicol provincial officials for the supposedly anomalous purchase of fertilizers in 2004.
Charged were Department of Agriculture Officer-in-Charge for the Bicol region Hector Sales, former Malinao Mayor Emiliana Kare, former municipal accountant Rosemarie Cea-Capus, and former municipal treasurer Leonora Capus.
The officials were accused of giving unwarranted benefit to Feshan Philippines for the purchase of 2,000 liters of Bio-Nature Liquid Organic Fertilizer in 2004 without public bidding.
Two tranches of payments were made to Feshan: one on April 26, 2004 worth P1.93 million, and another on August 13, 2004 amounting to P1.039 million.
Norberto Resontoc, a former Malinao municipal agriculturist, was also included in one of the malversation charges against Kare.
The Ombudsman recommended a P140,000 bail each for Sales, Cea-Capus and Capus, while the recommended bail amount for Kare and Resontoc are P180,000 and P40,000 respectively.
The purchase of fertilizers from Feshan Philippines was also the basis of cases filed against other officials who had transactions under the Ginintuang Masagang Ani program of the Department of Agriculture in 2004.
In August, the Sandiganbayan 1st Division sentenced former Sorsogon Governor Raul Lee to 40 years in jail over involvement in the scam.