I challenge Greco Belgica to name names of the “12” lawmakers that he is linking to corruption at the Department of Public Works and Highways. Present hard evidence and file the proper cases before the Ombudsman.
Or shut up.
Nobody should go to town armed only with innuendoes. In the case of Belgica who miserably lost running for the Senate in 2019, this is an unabashed attempt to investigate “in aid of the 2022 elections”.
Worse, President Duterte admitted he received a list of alleged corrupt
lawmakers from Belgica but declined to name the congressmen, saying he does not have jurisdiction over them.
So Mr. President, why do you tolerate Belgica acting as a peddler of intrigue?
As a lawyer, a former prosecutor, a mayor and now president, you should have told him to hand it over to the Office of the Ombudsman, or to the Congress Ethics Committee which are the appropriate bodies who can do something about it.
Jurisdiction is explicit here. The PACC can only investigate persons that are presidential appointees.
What Belgica is doing is unacceptable and irresponsible. It is trial by publicity.
The leadership of the legislature should not take this sitting down not just because it is an implied violation of the separation of powers between the executive and the legislative, but an outright squid tactics against its reputation.
I am sick and tired of Belgica’s sucking up to Duterte, and using the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission as his soapbox to Congress.
Belgica said his stemmed from complaints of witnesses who are contractors and government employees with personal knowledge on the matter, and who provided documents, pictures and videos to prove their claims.
By his own admission, this is simple hearsay by a second party.
Belgica even makes his position weaker by admitting that the evidences have still to be validated. OMG, the sour pus submitted unverified information to the President of the Philippines!
A hack job on the Villars?
Now he passes the buck to the task force on corruption led by the Department of Justice (DoJ).
I heard Justice Undersecretary Emilene Aglipay-Villar being interviewed by Radyo Pilipinas over this unpolished issue. All the lady could say is that there are no submissions yet that her department has received from PACC.
Yet it is all over mainstream media already.
I find this quite curious because Aglipay is the wife of DPWH Secretary Mark Villar, and she is inevitably being dragged by PACC to an awkward corner.
The undersecretary must inhibit herself from cases that involve her husband’s department, and Mark Villar should take this up with the President because being a member of the Cabinet it can be construed that he and his wife are being compromised here by a reckless dumb ass under Malacanang.
Belgica is making President Duterte look like a patsy because the PASCC commissioner has not been forthcoming with cleans hands.
Case of Othello Dalanon
The first to put Belgica to the chopping block is a former director of the Bureau of Internal Revenue who blew the whistle on his bosses.
Dalanon accuses Dulay of what he alleges as anomalous compromise settlements by big corporations, that owed the government tens of billions of taxes but were quieted over only a few millions.
Dalanon, who also exposed the Dunkin’ Donut tax evasion case during the time of Commissioner Kim Henares and President Noynoy Aquino, tried to reach President Rodrigo “Digong” Duterte to report the irregular deals.
But the BIR beat Dalanon to the draw by kicking him out before he could have an audience with the President. Not content with having him dismissed from the service, Dulay filed libel cases against Dalanon.
The whistleblower was even accompanied by my friend and his lawyer Melchor Magdamo to an audience with Belgica at his office at the Palacio del Gobernador in Intramuros. Belgica busied himself with his cellphone while Magdamo argued Dalanon’s case.
Recently, the friends of Dalanon had to pass the hat around to raise his bail bond for his libel case. He is now out on bail and has resorted to crowdfunding to finance what looks ahead to be an expensive defense in court.
Here is Dalanon’s appeal to Belgica sent over social media:
“Imprison me for what I accuse you of. Then do what is right.
“File case of action against Secretary Carlos Dominguez III, Commissioner Caesar Rivera Dulay, and former BIR Deputy Commissioner Nestor s. Valeroso, (for settling) Cosmos Bottling Corporation’s P3.76 billion deficiency tax liability for only P51 million – and your children, your children’s children, will be proud of you…”
Case of Monalie Dizon
This lady is the founding chairman of Kilusang Pagbabago, a movement that campaigned vigorously for the candidacy of Digong Duterte for president.
Last year, Dizon filed a graft complaint against Belgica before Ombudsman for supposed illegal raids, malfeasance and usurpation of authority.
She questioned the presence of Belgica when he went along with authorities to raid two government employees with salary grade 26 from the Bureau of Internal Revenue without the consent of the PACC.
“All his acts are without the authority of the Commission. Further, the subject of the entrapment are two officials of the BIR whose positions are below grade 26, thus are not within the jurisdiction of PACC as provided under Section 5 (a), hence Belgica’s act was contrary to law,” her complaint read.
She said the PACC official was armed with a gun during the raid. “Like an actor in a movie, Belgica took possession of a firearm and play-acted as if he was about to do a shooting match with the alleged criminals.”
“In his eagerness to attain publicity for himself he tipped the media to cover the raid for the purpose of serving his personal interest of maximum publicity for him thus enhancing his popularity to the public and thereby fulfill his ambition to become a Senator of the Republic,” her complaint continued on.
She said Belgica lead another raid on a fixer transacting illegal business at the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board for a transport network vehicle service.
Case of the Duty-Free employes
Alexander Sablan, Ernesto Mangalindan, Romeo Silva Jr., Eric Oracion, Rizalino Santos, Nilo Duarte, Joaquin Vibal, Francis Daco, and Carlito Ardales want Belgica to be held liable for violations of Section 3(b), (e), (f), and (k) of R.A. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, Grave Misconduct, Conduct Prejudicial to the Service, and Gross Inexcusable Negligence.
The DFP employees said they were “very frustrated and disappointed” in Belgica for taking on their case of “smuggling” against DFPC Chief Operating Officer (COO) Vicente Pelagio Angala.
They said in the complaint that they sought Belgica’s help after listening to his program with DZRH called “Ireklamo Mo Kay Greco.” They then went to his house in San Miguel Avenue near Malacañang and sought help regarding allegations of anomalies and corruption within DFP.
He listened to their concerns and introduced his father, Gregor Belgica, and his lawyer sibling, Atty. Jeremia Belgica. The Belgica clan assured the DFP employees that they have their support, and they said they were lucky because they do not have to pay for any legal fees.
However, when they filed the plunder complaint before the Ombudsman on March 16, 2017, with the help of the firm of Belgica’s brother – Belgica Aranas Alim Dela Cruz & Associates – they had to pay P1,000 per page or a total of P130,000.
Things went downhill when Belgica contacted Angala and set up a meeting with them. During the meeting, they were made to sign a “waiver”.
In the end, Belgica recommended to President Duterte filing of “generic” charges against officials of DFP without including the names of those involved.
Finally but not lastly, from an impeccable and reliable source from the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) as well as the DPWH, Belgica allegedly harassed and pressured officials of both departments using his position as PACC Commissioner.
According to the source, a company, Verdant, owned by a certain Ms. Nuesca represented by a law firm owned by Greco Belgica’s brother Atty. Jeremiah B. Belgica, Duterte-appointed director general of the Anti-Red Tape Authority or ARTA, approached certain DENR officials to ask for the issuance of an Environmental Compliance Certificate (ECC) as a requirement to operate a bigtime quarry in Zambales.
While the ECC issuance was still pending Verdant went to the DPWH and pressured officials there to issue a quarry permit. Having failed to get what she wanted, Jeremiah Belgica prodded his brother Greco Belgica to intervene by summoning DENR and DPWH officials with ranks of undersecretary, assistant secretary and director.
Commissioner Belgica allegedly said that if they will act favorably to the application of Verdant, he will not conduct an investigation on them.
In its institutional video, Belgica Aranas Alim Dela Cruz & Associates claims phenomenal growth in so short a time. Some are asking whether this is because Grepor is the presidential adviser on religious affairs, Greco is anti-graft commissioner and Jeremiah is anti-red tape chair?
Congressman calls Belgica’s bluff
ACT party-list Representative Eric Yap on Wednesday called out Commissioner Greco Belgica of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) for accusing lawmakers of corruption without identifying them, saying this is a disrespect to Congress.
“Sana nilabas niya ang pangalan ng mga involved. Unfair ang ginawa niya,” said Yap, who is chairman of the House Committee on Appropriations. “Ang institution ng Congress ang binastos niya eh without proper evidence. Hindi po nakakatuwa iyon.”
Yap questioned Belgica’s motive for such move, considering that he was sued by a group of Duty-Free Philippines Corp. (DFPC) employees of graft for allegedly sparing bigwigs in his commission’s probe on smuggling involving the government-owned and controlled corporation.
“Dahil ba ito sa Duty Free,”Yap said. “Marami pong matinong miyembro ng Kongreso, meron rin 4,000 na empleyado. Hindi namin mapapayagan na gamitin ang Kongreso for a cover-up,” he added.
Belgica was also criticized by Anakalusugan party-list Representative Mike Defensor for not identifying lawmakers involved in corruption.
What is Speaker Lord Allan Velasco’s take on this?
More than whiff
Just to close this page, a certain Rene Guidote twitted, “How do you expect a commissioner of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission to do his job judiciously if he has a graft case?
“Since he is under the Office of the President, here’s a whiff of corruption! Hoping your olfactory sense is working.”
Mr. President, if this bull in a China shop is allowed another day under your administration, I can only imagine what greatness you have achieve will he not demolish?
Greco Belgica is a loose cannon, a fake reformer and a wannabe superstar at your expense. #