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DOJ task force files raps vs lawmaker, DPWH official for alleged corruption

THE Department of Justice-Task Force Against Corruption (DOJ-TFAC) bared on Tuesday the filing of criminal charges against a lawmaker and an official of the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) before the Office of the Ombudsman for allegedly favoring certain contractors to undertake some government projects. 

A separate complaint was also filed before the Ombudsman involving a local government unit for alleged irregularities in the purchase of a parcel of land by a municipality, the task force said.  

DOJ Undersecretary Emmeline Aglipay-Villar said the two separate complaints were forwarded to the Ombudsman by the DOJ-TFAC after they have been found to be sufficient in form and substance. She, however, did not provide any further details, including the names of those who may likely face the allegations.

“The cases have just been referred to the Ombudsman and we have not received any update whether they have commenced the investigation, Villar reported.

Likewise, Villar said, the task force has also forwarded to the National Prosecution Service for preliminary investigation another complaint involving officials of the DPWH District Engineering Office with salary grade 27 and lower. 

The complaint has also been found to be sufficient in form and substance by the Complaints Evaluation Committee (CEC) of the task force. 

Villar said a total of 180 complaints have so far been received by the task force. 

Out of the total, 69 complaints have been referred to other TFAC members and appropriate agencies for actions, while some are being evaluated by the CEC. 

“Those which have already been evaluated by the CEC have been referred to the assistant secretaries, to the undersecretaries or the Secretary for review or further action,” Villar explained. 

On the other hand, Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra disclosed that some of the major complaints “are quietly being investigated by the NBI for case build-up.”

The DOJ-TFAC was formed upon the order of President Duterte following reports of corruption activities in various government offices. Last December, Duterte mentioned eight congressmen and a former legislator, who according to the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC), are allegedly linked to corruption in DPWH projects.

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