Court suspends Cotabato Gov for 90 days
DAVAO CITY—The Sandiganbayan has ordered the suspension of Cotabato Gov. Nancy Catamco for 90 days for her involvement in an allegedly overpriced fertilizer procurement in 2005.
The order was contained in a six-page resolution issued on July 4 by the Sandiganbayan’s sixth division.
Catamco is facing three cases in the Sandiganbayan, one of which is as private respondent in a graft case against Orville Fua, former mayor of Lazi, Siquijor province.
The 2005 fertilizer procurement in Lazi involved Perzebros Co. as supplier. The firm is owned by Catamco and her former husband, Pompey Perez.
Catamco petitioned the Supreme Court in August 2018 to review the case against her. The petition has yet to be resolved.
On March 21, the Sandiganbayan ordered Catamco to show cause why she should not be suspended while her case was pending.
In her May 2 reply, Catamco told the antigraft court that the matter about her preventive suspension should await resolution of her petition in the Supreme Court.
She also said that as a private respondent in the graft case, the rule on preventive suspension does not apply to her.
According to Catamco, the move to suspend her was politically motivated, coming in the runup to the campaign for the May 13 midterm polls.
She wondered why the suspension cropped up in March when she was already arraigned last year. —JEOFFREY MAITEM
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