Quantcast
Latest Stories

Tom O has ‘cop car’ repainted; keeps second white Dodge sedan for family use


One of two controversial US Dodge Chargers whose use is being investigated by the Ombudsman Visayas is now in a shop to be repainted.

Rep. Tomas Osmeña of Cebu City’s south district said the vehicle’s color will be changed to blue from its original black-and-white police car look.

That may take some of the heat off the issue of Osmena’s continued use of a lookalike police car with the seal of the Cebu city government.

“There was no intention by (sister) Minnie to keep the police car. The vehicle is now in the shop… Maybe (the change of color) will help address the issue, maybe not. But this was what was originally planned for the vehicles,” he said.

The sedan is not an official police car, but a moving prop once used in movie sets of film maker Bigfoot Entertainment, whose owner Michael Gleissner let Osmena use the vehicle during his term as mayor.

With questions raised about the propriety of the gift and the pseudo-official appearance of the car, the Ombudsman of the Visayas has started a fact-finding inquiry.

A second Dodge Charger, all white with no markings, remains in Osmena’s house.

Osmeña clarified that repainting the other black-and-white sedan was planned even before the controversy broke out.

His sister Minnie and her son Paulo acquired both vehicles last June 29. The cars we re registered with the Land Transportation Office (LTO) shortly after their purchase. Registration papers described the vehicles as white and blue Dodge Chargers, an American brand.

The white Dodge sedan was parked at the Osmeña residence in barangay Guadalupe yesterday when Cebu Daily News visited. He said it was painted white shortly after its purchase to be used as a service vehicle by Minnie and the family’s guests in addition to a 14-year-old Toyota sedan his sister uses during her visits to Cebu.

The other black-and-white Dodge sedan was used during the funeral march of the late DILG secretary Jesse Robredo in Naga City. Osmena said the repainting of the second vehicle was delayed because of requests for use by other parties, including Guadalupe barangay captain Micahel Gacasan.

Osmeña said he was willing to cooperate with the Ombudsman’s inquiry but said investigators should clarify what laws were actually violated.

He challenged Mayor Michael Rama to produce documents and prove claims that the vehicles were donated to the city government.

Osmeña recalled that he borrowed the vehicles from Gleissner on several occasionS when he was still mayor. The lookalike police car was used by the security office of the South Road Properties.

Mayor Rama earlier challenged the Ombudsman-Visayas and the Department of Interior and Local Governments (DILG) to investigate Osmeña’s use of the city government seal on one of two US Dodge cars.

In issuing the challenge, Rama said he himself responded to public criticism about the vanity plate bearing the title “Mayor” in the front of his city government issued Toyota Grandia van.

“I had the original license plate restored together with the vanity plate. Why doesn’t he (Osmeña) do the same with the Dodge cars in his possession?” he told reporters over the weekend.

Rama said he wasn’t the first one to question the ownership of the two US Dodge Chargers in Osmena’s possesion.

A photo of the Dodge police car was circulated in Facebook. The car was also photographed escorting the burial march for the late secretary Robredo.

Osmeña said the Dodge cars were kept at the SRP because of an earlier plan to build a police precinct there. At the time he said the vehicles will be parked there “for bragging rights” since Cebu City was the only city in the country which used a Dodge Charger as a police car, the same type used by American law enforcement agencies.

Osmeña admitted that the accusations leveled against him were already “hurting” him politically with many people talking about the car. He said his critics including Rama are branding him for “lack of transparency.”

“A lot of money is being spent by the other side in the media. All they provide are twisted allegations and all I have to do is to answer. There was no donation of the vehicles and the vehicles were never owned by the city. There are LTO registration documents to prove its ownership. That will help clear up some matters,” he said.

“But does that make it owned by the city? When I challenge them to file charges, that is not arrogance but a defensive mechanism because I believe in the system. All they have to do is state the laws which I violated,” he said. Correspondent Edison delos Angeles


Follow Us

Follow us on Facebook Follow on Twitter Follow on Twitter


Recent Stories:

Complete stories on our Digital Edition newsstand for tablets, netbooks and mobile phones; 14-issue free trial. About to step out? Get breaking alerts on your mobile.phone. Text ON INQ BREAKING to 4467, for Globe, Smart and Sun subscribers in the Philippines.

Tags: Cebu City , Rep. Tomas Osmeña




Copyright © 2014, .
To subscribe to the Philippine Daily Inquirer newspaper in the Philippines, call +63 2 896-6000 for Metro Manila and Metro Cebu or email your subscription request here.
Factual errors? Contact the Philippine Daily Inquirer's day desk. Believe this article violates journalistic ethics? Contact the Inquirer's Reader's Advocate. Or write The Readers' Advocate:
c/o Philippine Daily Inquirer Chino Roces Avenue corner Yague and Mascardo Streets, Makati City, Metro Manila, Philippines Or fax nos. +63 2 8974793 to 94
Advertisement
  1. US teacher fired over comment on black president
  2. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  3. Filipinos, Dane re-enact crucifixion of Christ
  4. Magnitude-7.5 earthquake shakes Mexican capital
  5. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  6. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  7. Massive infra spending set
  8. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  9. Easter crucifixions draw huge crowds
  10. Korea ferry captain arrested, divers spot bodies
  1. Kim Henares needs a reprimand, says Cayetano
  2. Suspect in Vhong Navarro mauling tries to leave PH
  3. More legal woes for Cedric Lee
  4. ‘No real progress in PH if dynasties not dismantled’
  5. ‘Mom, I love you,’ says text from student on sinking ferry
  6. Fr. Suarez says last Mass on Easter before returning donated land to San Miguel
  7. Enrile chief aide back in PH ‘to face charges’
  8. Massive infra spending set
  9. Henares on Pacquiao bashing: I did not start this
  10. I’ll follow my conscience on Estrada, says JV Ejercito
  1. KL confirms Malaysian Airlines Flight MH370 ended in Indian Ocean
  2. MRT passengers pass the hat for 6-year-old Ashley
  3. Rookie, lady cops lauded for quick response to MOA heist
  4. Malaysia averts another air tragedy; pilot lands troubled plane safely
  5. Revilla says he was joking; Lacson stands by his story
  6. Revilla ‘consulted’ Lacson on how he evaded arrest
  7. Police rule out foul play in Helena Belmonte’s death as boyfriend is ‘traumatized’
  8. Cudia, dismissed for lying, got 99% in conduct
  9. Model Helena Belmonte wished ‘to slash her wrist and hope to die’
  10. Hammer-wielding robbers cause chaos at Philippines’ Mall of Asia
Advertisement

News

  • Gigi Reyes back to face charges
  • Like Passover, Easter festival of deliverance
  • How other faiths in PH observe Holy Week
  • Collector Danny Garcia says Inquirer worth more than news
  • Cardinal Tagle: Start new life with true peace
  • Sports

  • Pacquiao top Mayweather contender
  • Rain or Shine, Ginebra clash for No. 6 spot
  • Ateneo eyes quarterfinal spot vs Benilde
  • Style contrast marks OneFC ‘Rise of Heroes’
  • ‘Pacquiao a great ambassador for basketball’
  • Lifestyle

  • How Zsa Zsa Padilla found Conrad Onglao; Sharon Cuneta played Cupid
  • Palawan favorite getaway of show biz celebrities
  • Levine designs womenswear with help from fiancee
  • Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Nobel laureate, dies at 87
  • Ford Mustang turns 50 atop Empire State Building
  • Entertainment

  • Why ‘Noah’ can’t dock his ark at Philippine theaters
  • Acclaimed artist goes wild while on holiday
  • Believing in this mermaid
  • Missing Xian
  • Awarded TV couple brings Jesus’ life to the big screen
  • Business

  • Top-selling insurance agent opens her dream café
  • Connecting and transacting with one another
  • Building wealth for health
  • Why Mandaue Foam buys, rather than rents, space
  • A workplace of new possibilities
  • Technology

  • Nasa’s moon-orbiting robot crashes down
  • Netizens pay respects to Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  • Nokia recalls 30,000 chargers for Lumia 2520 tablet
  • Facebook rolls out ‘nearby friends’ feature
  • Netizens seethe over Aquino’s ‘sacrifice’ message
  • Opinion

  • Epiphany
  • Unpaid creditor vs distressed debtor
  • Moving on
  • From culinary desert to paradise
  • Response to China: ‘Usjaphil’
  • Global Nation

  • Cesar Chavez movie sparks memories of Fil-Am labor leaders
  • Filipinos in US poised for success
  • Visas for priests and other faith leaders
  • DOH to continue tracking co-passengers of OFW infected with MERS virus
  • 5 Filipinos with MERS in UAE reported in stable condition
  • Marketplace
    Advertisement