IT was the city assessor who identified former city hall officials who acquired properties in Barangay Indahag, said Councilor Reynaldo Advincula as he tried to brush aside a threat of a libel suit.
Advincula said this in response to a threat of a libel suit made by ex-councilor Celestino Ocio III whose name surfaced in the city council inquiry on the distribution of government land in Indahag.
Advincula lashed back at Ocio, saying the former councilor was merely taking the issue for a ride.
"I did not name names. Ocio is out of his mind," said Advincula of the libel-case threat. "Why is Ocio reacting this way? I did not mention his name in my special report," Advincula said.
He said the names of Ocio and the daughters of ex-mayor Pablo Magtajas were mentioned by city assessor Atinodoro Asequia who was asked during a council session to identify the people who acquired public lands in Indahag.
It was Advincula who asked the council to invite Asequia and city environment and natural resources officer Ronaldo Gadut in regard to supposed complaints that deserving farmers were deprived of the opportunity to own properties in Indahag.
Before the city council last week, Advincula said former officials may have used their influence to acquire the properties.
In view of Asequia’s revelation, Advincula said Ocio and the Magtajases should explain how they were able to acquire the properties intended for the poor and under the guidelines of the environment department.
Gadut said 544 hectares in Indahag were supposed to have been given to poor farmers under the government’s agrarian reform program.
Advincula said Indahag barangay chairperson Carmelito Damo should also explain why he supposedly certified that the Magtajases and Ocio were qualified to receive land titles. (Ben Balce)
That can be read at Gold Star Daily