2 DOTr-CAR regional officials suspended for alleged corruption

MANILA — The Department of Transportation (DOTr) has suspended two officials of its regional office in the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) for alleged extortion and other corrupt activities.

The department has filed formal charges and imposed 90-day preventive suspension orders Monday against DOTr-CAR Regional Director Atty. Jesus Eduardo Natividad and Assistant Regional Director Datu Mohammad Abbas for alleged grave misconduct, conduct prejudicial to the best interest of service and gross neglect of duty.

According to the DOTr, Navidad allegedly demanded and accepted money in exchange for the approval of applications for certificates of public convenience (CPCs) and for requiring district heads for monthly remittances.

The official likewise failed to perform operations against ‘colorum vehicles’ and has received complaints of frequent absences in his work.

On the other hand, Abbas allegedly extorted money in exchange for the release of impounded vehicles.

A complaint was also filed against him by a certain Regina Migano for gun brandishing and toting.

Transportation Secretary Arthur Tugade reiterated his stance that he will not tolerate corruption and any wrongdoings of officials in the department.

Several officials were dismissed while others are being investigated for involvement in corruption and other illegal activities since Tugade assumed office.

“Hahaba at hahaba ang listahan ng mga masisibak sa Departamentong ito hangga’t hindi niyo itinitigil ang mga iligal na aktibidad. Maraming ulo na ang gumulong. Hindi ko kayo panghihinayangan lalo’t anay kayo na sumisira sa imahe ng mga tapat na naglilingkod sa gobyerno,” Tugade said in a statement Tuesday.

“Opisyal o ordinaryong empleyado, kung magnanakaw sa taong bayan o sisira sa imahe ng buong departamento, pasensyahan talaga tayo,” he added.

The respondents were given 72 hours to submit verified answer pending formal investigation. Further, the alleged violations of the two officials, if found guilty, will merit the penalty of dismissal from service.

For the meantime, the DOTr shall designate officers in charge to ensure that the responsibilities of the vacated offices will be efficiently performed. Aerol John Pateña/PNA – northboundasia.com