Signatures forged? Ex-solon Datumanung faces denies involvement in PDAF scam
Former Maguindanao 2nd District Representative Simeon Datumanung has denied endorsing any non-government organization (NGO) with links to a P3.8-million Priority Development Assistance Fund (PDAF) scam.
Datumanong has disowned his signatures on documents pertaining to the deal he supposedly entered with Maharlika Lipi Foundation Inc. (MLFI), saying those same signatures may have been forged.
“I have not done that in all my 50 years in government service, and the Ombudsman can check on facts in my records. Because if I’m used to giving notes, then I would have been indicted for bigger amounts then as secretary of the Department of Public Works and Highways, and the Department of Justice,” he said.
Recently, the Office of the Ombudsman ordered the filing of graft charges against Datumanong in connection with the implementation of his PDAF-funded projects worth P3.8 million in 2012.
The “pork barrel” projects involved livelihood programs like soap making, candle making and meat processing for the municipalities of Mamasapano, Ampatuan and Datu Abdullah Sanki.
The Ombudsman indicated that Datumanong picked the MLFI as the NGO partner for the project but the Commission on Audit (COA) discovered that the selection of the NGO did not undergo the required public bidding.
Also, the Ombudsman found that there was “extraordinary accommodation extended to MLFI in the examination, processing and approval by the concerned NCMF officers of the PDAF releases as show by the unnumbered and undated disbursement vouchers; and issuance of check prior to execution of the Memorandum of Agreement”.