Magpale, Rama in Ombudsman’s ‘millionaire’s list’
Suspended governor Gwendolyn Garcia is so far the richest elective official in Cebu.
This was reflected in the outgoing governor’s Statement of Assets and Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) which the Office of the Ombudsman in the Visayas released yesterday together with the SALN of other elective officials.
The governor’s SALN was in the first batch of SALNs released by the Ombudsman.
Garcia, who is set to return to her post before her third and final term ends this month, has declared a net worth of P105.2 million as of December 31, 2012.
Garcia registered the biggest leap in net worth, rising by P12.8 million in nine years, from the P92.4 million she reported in her SALN in 2004, her first year as Cebu governor.
Net worth or actual wealth is an official’s total assets minus his or her total liabilities. All government employees are required under the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees to submit their SALN to the Office of the Ombudsman.
Garcia’s wealth is tied to several businesses that she owned and operated before she became governor. Most of these businesses are based in Ormoc City in Leyte.
Garcia will succeed her brother, Pablo John, in representing the third district of Cebu in the House of Representatives, after winning the race against Pinamungajan Mayor Geraldine Yapha.
Acting Gov. Agnes Magpale, a scion of the Durano clan, also registered an increase in wealth, from P42.7 million in 2007 to P56.7 million as of December last year.
Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama made it to the “Millionaire’s Club” after declaring a total net worth of P4.3 million as of December 2012.
Rama, who was given a fresh mandate in the last elections, saw his wealth increase from P941,000 in 2004 to more than three million persos nine years later.
Board Member Arleigh Sitoy is the wealthiest among Cebu’s provincial legislators with a net worth of P68.7 million.
On the other hand, Cebu City Councilor Rodrigo Abellanosa’s wealth of P73.1 million is the highest among councilors in the city.
Deputy Ombudsman Pelagio Apostol said public officials are required to submit their SALN under Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-graft and Corrupt Practices Act and Republic Act 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.
R.A. 3019 stresses the need for public officials to declare under oath their assets and liabilities and the public’s right to know of these their assets, liabilities, net worth and financial and business interests including those of their spouses and of unmarried children under 18 years of age living in their households.
Apostol said government officials and employees who failed to submit their annual SALN or stated false items in the document have to face legal suits.
He said the submission of SALN allows the anti-graft office to monitor the rise and fall of an official’s wealth and allow them to determine if a government official’s lifestyle does not exceed his income.
Any unexplained rise in wealth or living a lifestyle way beyond an official’s declared asset can trigger an investigation, Apostol explained.
He, however, admitted that it would be difficult for the anti-graft office to determine ill-gotten wealth without any tip from a concerned individual.
“We encourage people to report to the office any irregularity with regard to entries found on the SALNs. Everybody should be vigilant and be part in our campaign against corruption in the country,” Apostol told reporters.
Any ill-gotten wealth, he said, shall be forfeited in behalf of the government.
Based on her 2012 SALN, suspended governor Garcia declared a net worth of P105.2 million, an increase of P1.1 million from P104.1 million in 2011.
Garcia’s total assets reached P158.7 million, which include P98,112 in bank accounts; P2.4 million in furniture and antiques; and P8.6 million in pieces of jewelry.
She also has a 50 percent share in total assets of GGC Enterprises valued at P24.3 million and a 67 percent share in total assets of the GGC Group at P34.5 million. (The initials stand for Gwen Garcia Codilla).
The governor listed herself as a shareholder of the GGC Group Inc. in Ormoc City as well as the GGC Services, Inc. in Cebu City; and is the proprietor of GGC Enterprises in Ormoc City, Leyte.
Garcia also owns a Chevrolet vehicle with a current fair market value of P900,000, as well as residential, agricultural, and commercial lots in Ormoc City and a residential lot in Cebu City—all of which were either purchased or donated.
Her real properties amounted to P158.7 million.
Garcia’s liabilities amounted to P53.5 million, listed as bank loans (P32,177,667), accounts payable (P16,117,078), and loans from the Government Service and Insurance System (GSIS) and Pag-Ibig (P5,172,672).
She has 14 relatives in government service including her father Deputy Speaker Pablo Garcia, the representative of the second district of Cebu; brothers Rep. Pablo John Garcia of Cebu’s 3rd district; Dumanjug Mayor Nelson Garcia; and Barili Vice Mayor Marlon Garcia.
Acting Gov. Magpale also reported a leap in her wealth from P54.9 million in 2011 to P56.7 million in 2012.
Magpale has a net asset of P56.7 million. These include a Toyota RAV4 SUV worth P1.1 million; a Mitsubishi Montero SUV worth P1 million; bank accounts amounting to P18 million from proceeds of a lot sale in Quezon City; furnitures, antiques, pantings, pieces of jewelry, books, and appliances (P2 million); school investments (P6 million); and an investment in J.D. Almendras Agro-Industrial Development Corp. (11.3 million).
She also declared at least six parcels of land located in Nueva Ecija, Cebu City, Danao City and Tuburan town. Magpale also owns two condominiums in Las Piñas City, Manila and Danao City as well as a beach resort in Danao City. She didn’t have any liabilities.
Magpale, who is the incoming vice governor of Cebu, has interests in J.D. Almendras Agro-Industrial Development Corp in Danao City and is the president of Northeastern Cebu Colleges in Danao City.
She has three relatives in government service which include her her son, Provincial Board Member Miguel Antonio Magpale, brother, Cabinet Secretary Jose Rene Almendras and cousin, Danao City Vice Mayor Ramon “Nito” Durano III.
Mayor Rama recorded a slight increase in his wealth, from close to P4 million in 2011 to P4.3 million last year. Rama does not own a car but he has a Honda City motorcycle worth P500,000.
Rama’s listed assets include a residential lot in barangay Basak San Nicolas, Cebu City worth P2 million; cash on bank of P1.5 million; jewelry (P85,000); investment (P300,000); furniture (P250,000); stocks (P641,300). His liability solely comes from a personal loan worth P950,000 million.
Rama, a lawyer, has been “on leave” in the Rama and Associates Law Office since July 1, 2010, according to his SALN .
He named eight relatives in government service: brother Jude Rama, a process server of the Cebu City Regional Trial Court; nephew, Cebu City Councilor Eduardo Rama Jr.; cousins barangay captain George Rama of Basak San Nicolas, barangay captain Domingo Lopez of Tinago, barangay councilor Ramon Rama of Sambag I, Department of Health regional director Susana Madarietta, Cebu City Medical Center consultants Deborah Limchiu and Naomi Poca; and
Mayor Rama said there is nothing alarming in the P300,000 increase in assets which he declared in his SALN.
Rama said that increase is just a small amount and should not be made an issue. “P300,000 ra? Kagamay ra ana. Dili na na kinahanglan tubagon. Maayo unta ug millions na,” he said.
Rama complained last year when Cebu Daily News published a story on the increase of his 2011 SALN by P2.1 million from only P1.8 million in 2010 to P3.95 million in 2011. He said that he felt bad with the CDN article which insinuated a sudden increase in his assets which actually come from his receipt of his share of his inheritance.
The SALNs of Cebu City Outgoing Vice Mayor Joy Augustus Young and Cebu City Councilor Richard Osmena have yet to be sorted out by the Ombudsman Visayas. In 2011, Young declared a total net worth of P9.3 million.
CEBU CITY COUNCILORS
In the Cebu City Council, the richest is Rodrigo Abellanosa with a net worth of P73.1 million.
Abellanosa is president of the Asian College of Technology and the chief executive officer/owner of CyberTower Development Corp., and the American International Culinary and Hospitality Institute.
He was followed by Councilors Raul Alcoseba with a net worth of P38.5 million; Edgardo Labella (P11 million); Sisinio Andales (P8.7 million); Leah Japson (P5.5 million); Nida Cabrera (P5.2 million); Margarita Osmeña (P5.1 million); Alvin Arcilla (P4 million); Augustus Pe Jr. (P2.1 million); Michael Ralota (P5.1 million); Noel Wenceslao (P1.9 million); Jose Daluz III (P1.8 million); Ronald Cuenco (P1.5 million); Roberto Cabarrubias (P989,000); Alvin Dizon (P655,000); Eduardo Rama (P63,165); and John Philip Po (P56,000).
In Cebu province, Board Member Arleigh Sitoy is the richest legislator with a total net worth of P68.7 million. Most of Sitoy’s wealth came from several parcels of land in Cordova town which he inherited. He was followed by Boardmembers Sun Shimura with a net worth of P20.9 million; Peter John Calderon (P13.2 million); Thadeo Ouano (P13 million); Wilfredo Caminero (P12.4 million); Alex Binghay (P9.1 million); Julian Daan (P3.6 million); Caesar Ian Geronimo Zambo (P2.3 million); Sergio Restauro (P2.6 million); Jude Thaddeus Sybico (P2 million); Miguel Antonio Magpale (P1.6 million); Carmen Remedios Meca (P1.5 million); Joven Mondigo Jr. (P1.5 million); Jose Ribomapil Holganza Jr. (P150,000) and SK Cebu Federation president Aladin Caminero (P471,000). With Edison A. Delos Angeles
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