Ex-governor of Antique seeks pardon from Duterte
SAN JOSE, ANTIQUE—Former Antique governor and ex-congressman Jovito Plameras Jr. is seeking pardon from President Duterte for a 2008 conviction for graft.
Antonio Alcantara, legal counsel of Plameras, said a recommendation for executive clemency for the 82-year-old former governor had been submitted to Malacañang during the last months of the Aquino administration but it was not acted upon.
It was submitted again to Malacañang when Mr. Duterte assumed office on July 1.
Ramonsito Canja, Antique parole and probation officer, said the recommendation for executive clemency or absolute pardon for Plameras was sent to the Board of Pardons and Parole on March 16.
An absolute pardon extinguishes all criminal liabilities of the convict and restores full civil liberties.
The Sandiganbayan on Dec. 2, 2008, convicted Plameras of graft for irregularities in the purchase of 1,354 school desks and 5,246 armchairs worth P5.6 million in 1997 for a project of the then Department of Education, Culture and Sports.
The antigraft court meted Plameras a jail term of six years and a month to 10 years and perpetual disqualification from public office.
The judgment became final and executory on March 11, 2014.
But Plameras has not been brought to New Bilibid Prison (NBP) in Muntinlupa City in Manila. He is confined at the Angel Salazar Memorial General Hospital (ASMGH) in the capital town of San Jose after suffering a stroke in April 2015.
The Sandiganbayan, in an order upheld by the Supreme Court last month, directed the transfer of Plameras from the hospital to NBP.
Alcantara said although Plameras is willing to serve his sentence in NBP, jail officials had said they don’t have medical facilities for the ex-governor.
Plameras could not stand and walk on his own and half of his body had been paralyzed. His blood pressure is also erratic, according to Alcantara.
“His situation might deteriorate and he could die there,” said Alcantara.
In an earlier interview Antique Gov. Rhodora Cadiao said the provincial government would comply with any court order to bring Plameras to the Antique Rehabilitation Center, the provincial jail.
The Inquirer was not allowed to enter Room 8 of the surgical ward at the hospital where Plameras is supposed to be confined amid reports that he is staying in his residence.
A nurse confirmed that the former governor is in the room, however.
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