Labella: I believe Rama’s innocent

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Cebu City Mayor Edgardo Labella believes that Vice Mayor Michael Rama is innocent of the graft charge filed against him.

The Office of the Ombudsman earlier indicted Rama for graft in relation to the alleged anomalous P25.4 million waste disposal transactions.

“I believe the innocence of the vice mayor, but I would rather not discuss the merits of this case because there’s already a recommendation for indictment,” said Labella. (

He added that he is “really deeply saddened by this development.”

Among the other respondents were former Bids and Awards Committee members Ester Concha, Belinda Navascues, Rolando Ardosa, Conrado Ordesta, Collin Rosell, and Dionisio Gualiza.

They were accused of violating Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, falsification of public documents under Article 171 of the Revised Penal Code, grave misconduct, serious dishonesty, and gross neglect of duty for allegedly favoring Asian Energy Systems Corp. as the city’s landfill of choice even if there were other providers in Metro Cebu.

The complaint was filed by former mayor Tomas Osmeña in 2017.