Malampaya scam: Plunder complaint vs Aquino
MANILA, Philippines – A farmers group on Monday, January 20, filed a complaint before the Ombudsman against President Benigno Aquino III and 12 others for funneling P125 million of the Malampaya fund to non-existent projects in 2011.
Also named as respondents in Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) complaint are alleged pork barrel scam mastermind Janet Lim Napoles, 5 government officials, and 6 private individuals.
- Budget Secretary Florencio Abad
- Budget Undersecretary Mario Relampagos
- Agrarian Reform Secretary Virgilio de los Reyes
- Agrarian Reform Undersecretary Narciso Nieto
- Agrarian Reform Undersecretary Jerry Pacturan
- Teresita Reyes
- Ashley Baul
- Benhur Luy
- Simplicio Gumafelex
- John Raymond de Asis
- John B. Lim
The group claimed that P100 million went to supposed non-existent organic farming projects of WorkPhil Foundation and Samahan Magsasaka sa Kapatagan at Kabundukan.
KMP said these NGOs committed to start vermicomposting or the production of natural fertilizers generated by cultured earthworms in the following municipalities:
- Marcos, Dingras, and Bagui in Ilocos Norte
- San Pablo and Benito Soliven in Isabela
- Paombong in Bulacan
- Samal in Bataan
- Porac in Pampanga
- Licab in Nueva Ecija
- Vintar in Ilocos Sur
The group also claimed that P5 million was given to each of 5 NGOs, was earmarked for agricultural development projects, and was released to the following NGOs:
- Social Development Program for Farmers Foundation Incorporated for Infanta, Quezon
- Karangyaan Para sa Magbubukid Foundation Incorporated for Calasiao, Pangasinan
- Kaupdanan para sa Mangunguma Foundation Incorporated for Dinalupihan, Bataan
- Ginintuang Alay sa Magsasaka Foundation Incorporated for San Nicolas, Batangas
- Agri and Economic Program for Farmers Foundation Incorporated for Umingan, Pangasinan
“Those projects were never implemented. Thus, the millions of pesos released to the NGOs were squandered,” KMP said.
Earlier, Rappler reported how Napoles cornered almost P1 billion from the Malampaya fund. (READ: How the Malampaya fund was plundered)
Not related to energy dev't
The group said the releases from the Malampaya fund that went to agricultural projects were illegal because the Malampaya fund is supposed to go only to projects related to energy development.
The Malampaya fund consists of royalties collected from operations of the Malampaya gas and oil fields in the waters off Palawan province.
KMP said both the Department of Budget and Management and the Department of Agricultural Reform even “facilitated, abetted and consciously misinterpreted the laws to ensure the successful pillage of public funds.”
The group deems Aquino as responsible for allowing the fund disbursement despite knowing that it was being allocated to non-energy related projects.
KMP also asked the Ombudsman to file charges of graft, malversation of public funds, and violations of the Government Procurement Law and the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees against the respondents. – Rappler.com