BACOLOD City – The Office of the Ombudsman has found probable cause to charge two engineers of the Office of the Building Official (OBO) with graft.
Orlando Dalipe Jr. and Nestor Velez – both engineer IV of OBO – were accused of 20 counts of violating Section 3(e) of Republic Act 3019, or the “Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act,” shown in a resolution approved by Deputy Ombudsman for Visayas Paul Elmer Clemente dated Oct. 3.
The resolution stemmed from a complaint that OBO head Isidro Sun Jr. lodged before the Ombudsman against Dalipe, Velez, Engineer I Edwin Anas, and OBO electrical inspector Alexander Manual on Oct. 12, 2016.
According to Sun, the OBO workers have misappropriated the payment for electrical permits they issued that year.
But the Ombudsman dismissed the complaint against Anas and Manual for lack of probable cause.
In Sun’s complaint, he wrote that Velez, Dalipe, Anas, and Manual “processed and approved 68 electrical permits or permits for temporary service connection without payment.”
To prove this, he attached a certification from the City Treasurer’s Office showing that the License Division did not receive the payment for the permits.
The official receipts (ORs) were left blank, Sun added.
In their counter-affidavits, Velez, Dalipe, Anas, and Manual said the ORs being left blank does not necessarily mean the fees were not paid.
They said the fees are “oftentimes” paid together with the application for a certificate of occupancy.
They also claimed that it was not part of their jobs to fill up the ORs – specifically the assessed amount and the OR number.
The Ombudsman said charging Dalipe and Velez was “more appropriate,” adding that their signatures appeared on the 20 unpaid electrical permits.
Panay News was still reaching Dalipe and Velez for comment as of press time./PN