Cases mulled vs fire investigators, who said Frasco’s truck caught fire by ‘accident’
CEBU CITY, Philippines — Governor Gwendolyn Garcia has asked the Provincial Legal Office (PLO) to look into possible charges that may be filed against the fire investigators in the Bureau of Fire Protection in San Francisco town, Camotes Island, who conducted the investigation on the alleged burning of the dump truck donated by Fifth District Representative Vincent Frasco “Duke” Frasco.
The fire investigators, in their January 24, 2020-report, concluded that the fire, which damaged the right portion of the vehicle on January 17 was caused by loose wirings in the truck’s alternator and was “accidental.”
Last Friday, January 17, Garcia called for a meeting with the BFP Cebu Province officials, Cebu Police Provincial Office Director Colonel Roderick Mariano, Frasco’s camp and San Francisco Mayor Alfredo Arquillano Jr. regarding the incident and the investigation report signed by Fire Officer 3 Ronnie Pasaol.
Frasco earlier criticized the report of the local fire department saying that it defied physical evidence. The congressman, to recall, labeled the incident as “political harassment.”
He pointed out that the vehicle’s fuse box and alternator were intact, which couldn’t be the case if the fire started there.
He also said that the vehicle’s engine was also off, making it “impossible” to catch fire due to any faulty wiring.
Frasco’s camp earlier alleged that the truck, which he bought out of personal funds, was set on fire at dawn of January 17 while it was parked outside the house of its designated driver, Fabian Machete, in Barangay Unidos, San Francisco.
The Provincial Information Office, in a news release, said the BFP had formed a Special Investigation Task Group to validate the earlier report of the BFP San Francisco.
The Capitol PIO also quoted Cebu Provincial Fire Marshal Superintendent Fritzie Manatad as saying that she has recommended for the relief of the fire officers in the town pending their investigation.
Garcia, noting “lapses” in the investigation report, asked Capitol Lawyer Donato Villa to look into possible cases that might be filed against the responsible officers.
The CPPO will also be conducting a parallel investigation regarding the incident./dbs
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