LTFRB exec denies corruption allegations
Romina Cabrera (The Philippine Star) - April 14, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — A Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board official, suspended pending the investigation of corruption charges against him, has claimed that the allegations are part of a “concerted effort” against him and LTFRB chairman Martin Delgra.

LTFRB executive director Samuel Jardin, in an interview with OneNews’ The Chiefs, said he believes Delgra is the ultimate target of the accusations against him.

“Maybe there’s a power play. Maybe somebody wants to get my job, maybe somebody wants to destroy the chairman,” he said.

The Department of Transportation (DOTr) put Jardin on preventive suspension for 90 days last week following the filing of a formal charge against him for grave misconduct, receiving gifts and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of service after he allegedly solicited at least P4.6 million to facilitate and grant a franchise or certificate of public convenience (CPC).

The charges stemmed from a complaint by Michelle Sapangila alleging that she was made to pay an initial P100,000 and P4.6 million that was supposedly to be split between him and Delgra.

Jardin said the allegation was a mere fabrication.

DOTR Undersecretary for legal affairs Reinier Yebra said they have previously initiated investigations against Jardin and with the previous probes and Sapangila’s complaint, the department decided to file charges against Jardin and suspended him.

Jardin said that he did not know that there were previous investigations against him and added that the process against him was going too fast.

He added that the preventive suspension against him had become oppressive.

The suspended LTFRB official also questioned the authority of the DOTr to suspend him since he is a presidential appointee. Jardin was appointed to his post by President Duterte in March 2018.

Aside from Jardin, the DOTr also filed similar charges against Manolo Labor, who resigned as Delgra’s chief of staff last month.

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