Tugade suspends DOTr official over bribery charges
Department of Transportation (DOTr) Secretary Arthur Tugade ordered the filing of charges against an agency official, who allegedly accepted bribes, including the hiring of escort services, from a transport cooperative.
On Tuesday, the DOTr chief has initially placed Roberto Delfin, the agency’s supervising transportation and development officer, under a 90-day preventive suspension for grave misconduct and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service.
Tugade said the suspension was meant to deprive Delfin “the opportunity to exert undue influence or pressure on potential witnesses and tamper with evidence pending formal investigation.”
Based on a November 3, 2017 charge sheet, Delfin is accused of receiving through his aide P150,000 in exchange for the DOTr’s favorable action on the application of New Sunrise Transport Cooperative (NTSC) for a route measure capacity.
The application is handled by the road transport planning division to which Delfin is assigned to.
Apart from the cash gift, Delfin also allegedly received from NTSC other favors such as “escort services and all-expense paid accommodation in a private resort.”
“I warned all of you before. There should be no whiff of corruption because once I catch you; I will not hesitate to remove you from office. We don’t want that [kind of practice]. The President does not want that,” Tugade said in a statement.
The charges against Delfin are yet to be filed with the Office of the Ombudsman as the DOTr’s legal office continues to gather evidence against the erring official. /kga
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