By Michael Punongbayan | The Philippine Star) | Updated July 10, 2015
MANILA, Philippines - One of the directors of the former maintenance service provider of the Metro Rail Transit-3 system appears to be part of the MRT-3’s new maintenance service provider.
Copies of documents posted by STAR columnist Boo Chanco on his social media account show that APT Global Inc.’s P668-million contract with the government awarded on Aug. 22, 2013 was signed by Marlo de la Cruz, who was also part of PH Trams-CB&T.
The new maintenance service provider’s authorized representative is among those ordered charged before the Sandiganbayan for alleged involvement in an earlier $1.15-million maintenance contract anomaly.
Documents show that De la Cruz signed the notice of award for APT Global Inc., which was also approved by Transportation and Communications Secretary Joseph Emilio Abaya, Undersecretary Jose Perpetuo Lotilla and former MRT-3 officer-in-charge Ronorito Chaneco.
The documents also confirmed former MRT chief Al Vitangcol III’s claim that he was not the only signatory in the contract with PH Trams-CB&T represented by its president Roehl Bacar.
On Wednesday, Vitangcol accused the Office of the Ombudsman of selective justice in finding probable cause to indict him for graft in connection with the contract.
He said DOTC officials should also face charges because they approved the deal.
“The contract would not have been awarded to PH Trams and CB&T JV had it not been for the subsequent approval of Lotilla and Abaya,” Vitangcol said.
Also ordered charged by Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales were Wilson de Vera, Manolo Maralit, Federico Remo and Vitangcol’s uncle-in-law, Arturo Soriano, currently the provincial accountant of Pangasinan, all of PH Trams-CB&T.
Vitangcol was accused of maneuvering the award of contract to the private contractor who allegedly received unwarranted benefits in bagging the deal.
The Office of the Ombudsman said Vitangcol should also be held liable for violating the Government Procurement Reform Act.
In a text message, DOTC spokesman Michael Arthur Sagcal assured the public that the DOTC is ready to cooperate and face any investigation. – With Louella Desiderio, Edu Punay