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May pinaboran? Graft raps filed vs. QC administrator Cuña over P30M school signages

Quezon City Administrator Aldrin Cuña is facing a complaint for graft and other administrative charges before the Office of the Ombudsman over the alleged anomalous bidding of P30-million worth of school signages.

The complaint against Cuña was filed by lawyers Mark Brian Celestino and Charlie Pascual on April 8 in their capacity “as concerned citizens and taxpayers.”

They want Cuña to held liable for criminal charges for violations of Section 3(e) and (g) of RA 3019, Article 171 paragraphs 2 and 4, and Article 217 of the Revised Penal Code for malversation and falsification of official documents.

In their complaint, the lawyers accused Cuña of favoring Rockford Development Corporation through an “irregular and anomalous procurement process” for the fabrication and installation of 1,450 school signages.

The budget for the project was sourced from the city’s Special Education Fund (SEF).

Results of the investigation conducted by the oversight committee organized by the Quezon City Council showed Cuña made it appear that there was a legitimate request for the project, even though the signages were not requested by the Local School Board (LSB).

There was also “no valid appropriations” for the project.

“It is alleged that the requesting office for the projects is the Division of City Schools of the QC LSB, with the funds coming from the SEF. However, when inquired upon by the Oversight Committee regarding the projects, Dr. Elizabeth E. Quesada, Superintendent of the Division of City Schools… denied under oath that she made any such request for the subject projects,” the complaint against Cuña said.

LSB Board Secretary Jesusa Baetiong also admitted in the inquiry that the board “appropriated the amount of only P1-million for school signages”. The request was made on April 24, 2017, even though the invitations to bid for the school signage projects were issued as early as August 5, 2016.