Ahong files perjury charge vs 7 Lapu-Lapu brgy captains
LAPU-LAPU CITY, Philippines — Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard “Ahong” has formally filed a perjury case against seven barangay captains who earlier filed a case of Malversation of Public Funds and Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act against the mayor, before the City Prosecutor’s Office.
Respondents of the case include Association of Barangay Council (ABC) President and Bankal Barangay Captain Eduardo Cuizon, Gun-ob Barangay Captain Eleonor Fontanoza, Looc Barangay Captain Regina Ybañez, Tungasan Barangay Captain Triponia Abayan, Subabasbas Barangay Captain Joselito Tibon, Canjulao Barangay Captain Reynaldo Tampus, and Maribago Barangay Captain Rosalino Abing.
Chan describes the case filed by the barangay captains in the Office of the Ombudsman Visayas as malicious and fabricated.
Aside from the mayor, other complainants include Bids and Awards Committee Chairman Lawyer James Sayson and members Ronald Malacora, Claire Cabalda, Romeo Berame; former City Social Welfare and Development Office (CSWDO) head Annabeth Cuizon; and City Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Office head Nagiel Bañacia.
Chan and the other complaints appeared before City Prosecutor Ruso Zaragoza for the filing of the perjury complaint.
“So mao na’y giingon nga gibutang-butangan rata nila. Mao na’y nakita sa atong abogado nga kaso, puros pamakak, puros hinimo-himo, para lang madaot ang pangan sa usa ka tawo. Mao na ang perjury nga kaso,” Chan said.
To recall, the seven barangay captains filed the case of Malversation of Public Funds and violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act against the mayor, due to alleged questionable purchases of Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) related items which amounted to more than P47 million.
Lawyer Jorge Esparagoza, Chan’s lawyer, also questioned the timing of the filing of the case by the barangay captains.
“Why now that they filed this complaint? Four months before the election. They could have filed this within 2020 or 2021. But they did this deliberately and willfully as political manipulation and maneuver for purposes of the election. And that’s why we want to file this complaint to protect and vindicate the legal rights and interests of the mayor and to prove to the people of Lapu-Lapu City that these people are lying,” Esparagoza said.
Aside from this, Chan said that they are also planning to file charges of Oral Defamation and Cyber Libel against the seven barangay captains.
Cuizon, for his part, said they welcome the case that was filed by the mayor against them.
“Ilaha pod nang katungod nga mo-alegar. Ang problema man gud ana pagmatuod nga among complaint is perjury or tumo-tumo. Wa koy problema ana tubagon rapod na namo kay ila mang gi-file. Ila man pod nang katungod dili mana nato sila mahikawan,” Cuizon said. /rcg
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