Masbate gov Antonio Kho posts bail in graft cases
Masbate Governor Antonio Kho on Thursday posted bail for two counts of graft for the allegedly anomalous procurement of liquid fertilizers in 2004 in connection with the fertilizer fund scam.
Kho posted P30,000 bail for each count of graft for a total of P60,000.
Kho was charged for the allegedly anomalous procurement of liquid fertilizers with Hexaphil Agriventures in 2004 causing undue injury to government.
In his first graft charge, Kho was accused of giving undue advantage and preference to Hexaphil in the Dec. 2004 purchase of 2,499 bottles of liquid fertilizer at P700.08 per bottle for a total amount of P1.732 million.
His second charge stemmed from the April 2004 purchase of 4,642.33 bottles of Hexaphil at P700.08 per bottle for a total amount of P3.2 million.
Ombudsman prosecutors said the purchases were done without public bidding and marred with irregularities — by making specific reference to the brand Hexaphil in the purchase request despite availability of several brands, by resorting to direct contracting without valid justification, and by accepting the spurious eligibility requirements submitted by Hexaphil.
Prosecutors said these irregularities were violations of the Republic Act 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act.
Also charged with Kho were his provincial administrator Roger Rapsing, the chairman of the Bids and Awards Committee; and private respondents Alex Rivera and Victoria Ajero, the president and area manager/collector, respectively, of Hexaphil.
Kho is the incumbent governor of Masbate after winning the 2016 elections against dismissed governor Rizalina Seachon Lañete, who was out on bail for plunder over the alleged Janet Lim-Napoles pork barrel scam. JE/rga
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