Complaint against Tomas Osmeña, ex-city officials over Kawit Island deal dismissed
CEBU CITY, Philippines—The complaint against former Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña and his City Council during his term filed by whistleblower Crisologo Saavedra over the P18-billion Kawit Island deal has been dismissed.
A copy of the 21-page decision dated January 27, 2023, was sent to the media on Friday, October 20, 2023.
“For want of probable cause, the criminal complaint for Violation of Section 3 (e) and (g) of Republic Act No. 3019, as amended, against public respondents Tomas R. Osmeña, Margarita Osmeña, Dave F. Tumulak, Sisinio M. Andales, Alvin B. Arcilla, Eugenio F. Gabuya, Jr., Gerry L. Guardo, Joy Augustus Young, Mare Ann delos Santos, Franklyn O. Ong, Frederick D. Go, and private respondents Lance Y. Gokongwei, James L. Go, Robina Gokongwei-Pe and Patrick Henry C. Go is hereby dismissed,” part of the decision reads.
“Moreover, the administrative complaint for conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service conduct unbecoming of a public official against public respondents is likewise dismissed for lack of substantial evidence,” it added.
‘No whiff of corruption’
Amando Virgil Ligutan, counsel for former Mayor Osmeña, welcomed the decision of the Ombudsman which they received on October 18.
“This is a testament to the truism that there is no whiff of corruption under the Tomas Osmeña administration. Zero,” Ligutan said.
In 2018, Saavedra filed a criminal complaint against the former mayor over the controversial P18 billion Kawit Island deal. The project paved the way for Gokongwei-owned Universal Hotel and Resorts Inc. (UHRI) to establish an integrated casino and resorts in the South Road Properties (SRP).
Saavedra is a known whistleblower, and was among those who revealed the overpriced street lamps used during the ASEAN Summit held in Cebu.
CDN Digital has reached out to Saavedra but hasn’t given his statement as of this posting. Refresh this page for updates.
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