Ombudsman to summon execs of 26 gov’t agencies

By Francis Allan L. Angelo


THE Office of the Ombudsman will summon the officials of 26 government agencies in the city and province of Iloilo to explain why their respective official vehicles were on the road last weekend.


Ferdinand Bauzon Jr., O-Plan Red Plate Task Force-Iloilo City team leader, said they were able to apprehend 13 government vehicles during their operation April 4. Out of the 13 apprehensions, 11 were found to have violated certain rules governing the use of government vehicles.


The task force apprehended the vehicles during roadside inspection and monitoring in malls, restaurants, recreational areas and airports in the city and province.


Bauzon said violations ranged from lack of official trip ticket, improperly accomplished trip tickets and trip tickets not serially numbered as mandated by Administrative Order No. 239 issued last September 15, 2008 which prohibits the use of government vehicles for purposes other than official business.


Other violations include vehicles that have no “For Official Use Only” marking, lack of official logo and/or name of agency, delinquent registration and lack of certificate of registration and official receipt.


Bauzon said they also observed that some of the apprehended government vehicles used illegal commemorative plates or don’t have registration plates.


In Iloilo province, 19 government vehicles were apprehended for going out on a weekend. A total of 15 vehicles were found to have violations.


S/Supt. Ricardo dela Paz said most of the apprehended vehicles in the province did not have official trip tickets. 


“The apprehended vehicles belonged to the Philippine Army, local government units and national government agencies,” dela Paz said.


Some of those who will be summoned by the Ombudsman are officials of the Department of Public Works and Highways, General Services Office of the Iloilo Provincial Government, Mines and Geosciences Bureau of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources, National Power Corp. based in Cebu, Housing and Land Use Regulatory Board, the municipal governments of Pavia, San Enrique and Leganes in Iloilo and Panay in Capiz and Iloilo State College of Fisheries-Barotac Nuevo campus.


Engr. Rolando Asis, DPWH regional director, was apprehended by the task force in Brgy. Tagbac, Jaro while riding his office vehicle.


The task force said the trip ticket shown by Asis’s driver was good for April 1 to 15 which is inappropriate. The tickets also did not have specific destinations.


Asis said he was inspecting government projects in Capiz when apprehended by the task force.


“I go out to inspect projects even on weekends. I use the office vehicle when conducting the inspections. When I go on personal trips, I use my own car,” Asis said.


The Ombudsman will determine if charges will be filed against government officials who violated the rules on usage of government vehicles.


The task force is composed of the Ombudsman, Land Transportation Office, Commission on Audit, Philippine National Police, Civil Service Commission and the Philippine Information Agency. (With reports from PIA-6)