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Ex-Iloilo mayor gets 10-year-jail term over ‘fertilizer scam’

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Former Maasin mayor Mariano Malones of Iloilo province has been sentenced to 10 years in prison after being found guilty of graft by the Sandiganbayan.

In a 48-page decision, the Sandiganbayan’s 7th Division said the local government of Maasin bought nearly million-peso worth of liquid fertilizer without public bidding.

“The municipality of Maasin immediately brushed aside…public bidding…and resorted to an alternative mode of procurement without any duly approved BAC (bids and awards committee) resolution,” read part of its decision

The municipality also purchased liquid fertilizer at an overprice – 666 bottles at P1,500 each when an alternative could be bought at only P150 per bottle, according to the anti-graft court. (https://bit.ly/38AaZIU)

There was an overpricing of P889,110.

Also convicted and meted 10-year prison sentences each were former municipal accountant Cecilio Montefrio and acting municipal accountant Jimmy Borra.

Malones, Montefrio, and Borra were also barred from holding public office.

The decision was signed by 7th Division Chairperson Associate Justice Ma. Dolores Gomez-Estoesta and Associate Justices Zaldy Trespeses and Georgina Hidalgo.