DoTr-CAR top officers suspended for alleged corruption

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TWO EXECUTIVES of the Department of Transportation (DoTr) have been placed under a 90-day suspension beginning May 21 for alleged corruption, the department announced yesterday.

In a statement, DoTr said it has filed charges against Regional Director Jesus Eduardo Natividad and Assistant Regional Director Datu Mohammad Abbas from the Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR) for “grave misconduct, conduct prejudicial to the best interest of service and gross neglect of duty.”

The department charged Mr. Natividad for allegedly taking bribes to influence an ongoing application for Certificates of Public Convenience (CPC) and demanding monthly remittances from district leaders.

On top of that, he is also being questioned for habitual absences and inability to eliminate colorum vehicles in the region.

Mr. Abbas, on the other hand, has been accused of releasing impounded vehicles in exchange of money, and displaying his firearms.

The two top regional officials have been given 72 hours to respond to the charges, after which formal investigations will commence.

They will be axed if found guilty.

The suspension came a day after a Tourism assistant secretary, Mark Kristopher G. Tolentino, was fired by President Rodrigo R. Duterte. He was accused of making deals with a presidential sister.

Malacañang spokesperson Harry L. Roque, Jr. echoed the call of the President on Monday not to entertain anyone who uses the name of his relatives to peddle influence in government.

DoTr Secretary Arthur P. Tugade shared the same sentiment in the statement, saying he will not tolerate corruption in his department.

“The list of names of those fired from the department will keep getting longer if you will not quit your illegal activities. Heads are rolling. I will not regret losing you,” Mr. Tugade was quoted as saying in Filipino.

DoTr said a number of officers have already been removed from office under the leadership of Mr. Tugade, while several others are undergoing investigation. — Denise A. Valdez