Iligan mayor accused of assault, threat
Gerry Lee Gorit (The Philippine Star) - February 26, 2020 - 12:00am

CAGAYAN DE ORO CITY, Philippines — Iligan City Mayor Celso Regencia has been accused of assaulting and threatening an employee of the city government.

In an affidavit submitted to the Office of the Ombudsman by Norbel Romarez, Regencia was charged with kidnapping, physical injuries, grave threat, coercion, and violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

Romarez, a job order worker of the city government, said he has been assigned at the Central Material Recovery and Composting Facility (CMRF) in Barangay Bonbonon since 2014.

He said Regencia hit him in the abdomen and ears on Feb. 14.

The complainant said Regencia’s anger toward him started after reports circulated on social media that the Dodiongan Falls has been contaminated with leachate or liquid discharge from the CMRF.

He said the mayor ordered him and another worker to release the leachate and prevent it from overflowing.

“One of my functions is to watch and monitor the level and flow of the leachate to the pond. When the pond becomes full, we pump the leachate and siphon it back toward the garbage area,” read a part of Romarez’s affidavit.

He said there were times that the pond could not take the volume of the discharge.

“To prevent overflowing, we used pipes to catch the leachate before it reaches the pond. We divert it to a canal,” he said.

“As a result, the nearby Dodiongan Watefalls located below the CMRF was affected and the water sometimes turned black and brown,” Romarez said. 

He said he wanted justice for what Regencia did to him.

“I did not report to work since Feb. 14 out of fear for my life,” he said

The STAR tried but failed to reach Regencia for comment.

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