SC gives go-signal to pursue graft case vs supplier of Cebu lamppost

A+
A
A-

MANILA, Philippines -The Supreme Court gave the go-signal to pursue graft case against the supplier of the alleged overpriced lamppost for the 12th Association of Southeast Asian Nations summit in 2007.

In an 18-page decision, the high court’s third division through Associate Justice Jose Catral Mendoza said the Sandiganbayan did not abuse its discretion in pursuing the case against Isabelo Braza, President and Chairman of the Board of FABMIK Construction and Equipment Supply Company Inc. (FABMIK).

Braza, along with other Cebu officials, in 2008 have been slapped with a case for violation of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act for the award of the contracts for the supply and installation of street lighting facilities, testing and commissioning of L.E.D. bulbs, traffic signal lantern and other traffic control devices along the roads in Cebu worth over P164,524,401.25, the amount of which was in excess of the Ombudsman and Commission on Audit computation of over P 60-million.

At the Sandiganbayan, Braza sought a reinvestigation of his case. The Sandiganbayan granted his motion as the court noted that the allegation of overpricing was based on falsified document and was enough to merit a reinvestigation. The Ombudsman conducted a reinvestigation that affirmed its earlier findings against Braza. It then submitted an amended information which was accepted by the anti-graft court.

However, Braza refused to be arraigned on the modified case saying it is tantamount to double jeopardy.

But in dismissing his petition, the high court said “Braza cannot plausibly rely on the principle of double jeopardy to avoid arraignment under the second information because the offense charged therein is different and not included in the offense charged under the first information.”

“It appears that Braza has obviously lost sight, if he is not altogether aware…the doctrine of double jeopardy is a revered constitutional safeguard against exposing the accused from the risk of being prosecuted twice for the same offense and not a different one,” the high court added.

The Court added that if Braza is questioning the evidence against him, it would better be addressed in a full-blown trial on the merits.

“It is not proper therefore, to resolve the issue right at the outset without the benefit of a full-blown trial. This issue requires a fuller ventilation and examination,” the high court said.

Disclaimer: The comments uploaded on this site do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of management and owner of INQUIRER.net. We reserve the right to exclude comments that we deem to be inconsistent with our editorial standards.

  • 123pinoy_ako

    ikanta mo na din yung mga nakinabang sa mag lamposts na yan. kung ayaw mo naman, mag solo ka na lang sa kulungan. dalhin mo yung isang lampost para may ilaw ka dun sa selda mo. lol.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_QSBNZB3TEKHJE5A74STZTTUHC4 ed0408

    Don’t be a coward, spill the beans. Bring them all with you in jail because they made more money than you. 

  • rommel joseph

    This decision causes a strong chilling effect on government officials who approved the project. Will they be staying in jail for the rest of their lives?

    • buttones

      Unlikely, but one never knows. Surely the obvious evidence is to have an expert in these matters, a QS guy or an architect to be given the spec of the lamppost, a metal tube basically with a bulb stuck on the top, and he to offer his opinion on what that might have cost a few years ago. His opinion might come down to about 7000 peso, and, given the fact that the local guys paid 90,000 a stick it raises a few questions? Of course this is PH……

  • bogli_anakdami

    wow… talaga tong mga flip gung gongs oo nakakasuka…

    yung lamp post eh nai-pakilo na kay intsik beho, ngayon lang kakasuhan ang mga magnanakaw…

    bwi hi hi hi hi pwi!

  • Ross

    This is very obvious corruption, na documentary pa ito… salamat naman umusad sa term ni PNoy…

  • buttones

    Well if anybody has seen these dismal posts, [a terrible indictment on PH urban designers and planners if there ever was one] one might see the problem. Having driven past these the other day on my annual visit to the fair City of Cebu and environs, I was shocked to see that none of them actually work, They are mostly rusted away, they have no lights, the wiring has been stolen. Specification? Well, what you do is get a tube of metal, drill some holes in it, slide in a plastic sheath, put a sort of cover over the top, bung in a couple of bulbs and there you go. Cost? About 8000 peso installed – Price paid? About 90,000 peso each……go figure…..What a load of third world crap! 

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

editors' picks

advertisement

popular

advertisement

videos