Mayor Reynaldo San Pedro of the City of San Jose del Monte in Bulacan province has denied any irregularity in the construction of a new government center in the city.
San Pedro said the project underwent regular bidding process and it was scrutinized and approved by the City Council.
“Dumaan sa tamang proseso ang proyekto at (The project underwent normal process and) we opened it for bidding,” said San Pedro.
During the bidding process, San Pedro said, only one company submitted a bid for the architectural design of the project so it was awarded to Arce Bailon-Arce Consultancy firm, one of the best firms in the country.
In fact, Arce has designed some national government projects such as the Office of the Ombudsman.
He also denied allegations that the new government center is overpriced saying that structure is considered to be world class because it followed the green building requirements.
San Pedro explained the architectural design amounting to P 4 million during the time of former Mayor Eduardo Roquero in 2002 has increased only to P14.5 million after more than 10 years.
He pointed out the payment for Arce did not exceed the guidelines set by tariff law.
According to San Pedro, the construction cost of the new Government Center is only P29,242 per square meter, which is lower compared to other questionable projects in Visayas and Metro Manila
In defending the project cost, San Pedro said the new government center was transferred to a location which is more accessible to the people of San Jose.
San Pedro issued the statement after Councilor Romeo Agapito filed plunder and graft complaints against him before the Office of the Ombudsman.
“The accusation has no basis because the project was scrutinized by the City Council, which conducted a series of investigation,” he said.
The mayor pointed out that the City Council found no irregularity in the project as it adhered to the bidding process and Republic Act 9184 or the Government Procurement Reform Act.
San Pedro said when the City Council conducted the probe, Agapito was not able to present documents to prove his allegations.
Aside from Mayor San Pedro, Agapito also filed the same charges against acting City Engineer Arnel Vitug, City Administrator Eduard Ignacio, City Budget Officer Ana Sucgang, City Legal Officer and Bids and Awards Committee Head Arnel Antero, BAC Secretary Head Debbie Ann Leuterio, City Treasurer Analiza Mendiola, Engineer Leonardo Nicolas as Consultant to the Mayor.
As well as private individuals Mariano Arce and Ma. Nina Bailon-Arce of Arce Bailon-Arce Architectural firm, Joselito Rami Encabo, Carina Encabo, Delia Teves, Cara Maria Encabo, Maria Camir Encabo, Emmalyn Encabo and Melgabal Encabo of RR Encabo Contructors, Incorporated.
Because of this, San Pedro plans to file perjury and libel complaints against Agapito for his malicious allegations.
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