Sandiganbayan clears ex-Iloilo mayor of graft raps

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The Sandiganbayan has cleared former Sara, Iloilo mayor Neptali Salcedo of graft in connection with the alleged overpriced road projects in 2006.

The anti-graft court dismissed the graft charges against Salcedo, former municipal treasurer Edna Pacrim, and then town engineer Roel Salcedo for want of evidence.

“The prosecution’s evidence fails to prove beyond a reasonable doubt that the projects are undertaken by the local government of Sara, Iloilo was attended by any illegality,” its ruling read. (

The case stemmed from the complaint filed by former Iloilo congressman Niel Tupas, Jr., who accused the Salcedos and Pacrim of implementing the overpriced new farm-to-market roads worth P300,000 in 2006.

The projects were funded by the office of Senator Franklin Drilon.

In the decision, the Sandiganbayan ruled the prosecution failed to present evidence to prove the respondents’ guilt. “The prosecution’s evidence failed to establish the basis for its claim that the funds disbursed by the local government of Sara, Iloilo, were intended for the construction of new farm-to-market roads and, that accused only made repairs to old or existing roads.”