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News Briefs: April 3, 2019

04:58 AM April 03, 2019

Ex-Nabcor execs in P99.9-M deal face raps

The Office of the Ombudsman has filed graft charges against Alan A. Javellana, former president of the now defunct National Agribusiness Corp. (Nabcor), and seven other officials of the agency in the Sandiganbayan’s Third Division in connection with the allegedly irregular purchase of some P99.9 million in postharvest equipment and facilities.

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From January 2007 to June 2008, all coaccused supposedly defrauded the government when they purchased 20 packages of postharvest facilities and equipment from Agri Component Corp., which included training, delivery and installation charges, in the amount of P4,995,000 per package. —Patricia Denise M. Chiu

DOH seeks exemption from hiring ban

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Since President Rodrigo Duterte has yet to approve this year’s P3.8-trillion national budget, the Department of Health (DOH) has asked the Commission on Elections (Comelec) for exemption from the ban on hiring of new employees to ensure the deployment of some 25,000 nurses, midwives, pharmacists and other health workers, especially to far-flung areas of the country, as “a matter of urgency.”

Under Comelec Resolution No. 10429, government agencies are prohibited to appoint, hire, create or fill up positions during the last 45 days of the election period, which started on March 29. —Jovic Yee

Guam OKs work visas for 355 Filipinos

HAGATNA, Guman — More than 350 Filipino workers have been approved by Guam to work at projects on the island despite the recent removal of the Philippines from the list of countries approved by the US government for new H-2B visas, Pacific Daily News reported on Monday.

The governor’s office says four contractor firms were approved for 355 workers, including Core Tech, Nan Inc., J Corp., and Northern Construction. Officials say Core Tech was allowed to apply for a second project using 258 current H-2B workers, while the other contractors were approved to bring workers from the Philippines.  —AP

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