On ‘Unexplained Wealth’ Ombuds to Mabilog: Reply to allegations
Jennifer P. Rendon (The Freeman) - January 23, 2015 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines -  The Office of the Ombudsman of the Visayas has ordered Iloilo City Mayor Jed Patrick Mabilog to file his counter-affidavit over allegations that he has unexplained wealth.

In an order, dated November 28, 2014, newly-appointed Deputy Ombudsman for the Visayas Paul Elmer Clemente gave Mabilog 10 days upon receipt to refute the allegations that he acquired properties worth millions of pesos considered “manifestly disproportionate” to his income as a public official and engaging in private business constituting conflict of interest.

Former Iloilo provincial administrator Manuel Mejorada, a resident of La Paz district in the city, has accused Mabilog for allegedly amassing unexplained wealth and abusing his position to build a “business empire” in his jurisdiction.

Mejorada said he received his copy of the order only yesterday. The cases are docketed as OMB-V-F-14-0001, OMB-V-C-14-0617 and OMB-V-A-14-0460.

In a complaint filed on September 11, last year, Mejorada accused Mabilog of putting up companies that operate various donuts stalls in public transport terminals, markets and sidewalks. Another company, allegedly controlled by Mabilog, owns and operates a commercial building at the Mandurriao side of the Esplanade, he said.

Mejorada said he based his complaint on the 2013 statement of assets, liabilities and net worth of Mabilog.

Aside from violation of Section 8 of Republic Act 3019 on unexplained wealth, Mejorada also charged Mabilog with perjury in the criminal case, and administratively for dishonesty and grave misconduct.

Under Republic Act No. 1379, the Ombudsman can pursue forfeiture proceedings against public officials who accumulate properties and other forms of wealth that cannot be explained by their income in government.

Such properties are deemed prima facie to be ill-gotten wealth and are subject to confiscation by the government, Mejorada said.   (FREEMAN)

DEPUTY OMBUDSMAN FORMER ILOILO ILOILO CITY MAYOR JED PATRICK MABILOG LA PAZ MABILOG MANUEL MEJORADA MEJORADA OFFICE OF THE OMBUDSMAN OF THE VISAYAS REPUBLIC ACT UNDER REPUBLIC ACT NO VISAYAS PAUL ELMER CLEMENTE
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