Joey Marquez cleared in second overpriced broomsticks case

By Michael Punongbayan The Philippine Star

Updated May 19, 2011 12:00 AM 0 comment to this post Marquez Zoom

MANILA, Philippines – Former Parañaque mayor Joey Marquez was acquitted yesterday of charges that he used city government funds to purchase overpriced broomsticks in 1997, the second such case filed against him.

The Sandiganbayan said a Commission on Audit report finding the broomsticks overpriced was not supported by convincing evidence.

“In the absence of any signed quotation from the suppliers of Parañaque City, it would be difficult to determine the actual price of the walis ting-ting bought by the City of Parañaque at the time the subject transactions were made,” read the court decision.

Others acquitted were city treasurer Silvestre de Leon, city accountant Marilou Tanael, city budget officer Flocerfida Babida, general services office chief Ofelia Caunan, Ailyn Romea of the city mayor’s office and private suppliers Ricardo Adriano of RDJ Enterprise and Realina Ty of Real Trading.

The Sandiganbayan said Marquez and his co-accused did not commit graft based on a 2009 Supreme Court (SC) decision that reversed its ruling, which convicted Marquez of graft for the purchase of overpriced broomsticks.

“The reasoning of the Sandiganbayan is specious and off-tangent. The audit team reached a conclusion of gross overpricing based on documents, which, at best, would merely indicate the present market price of walis ting-ting of a different specification, purchased from a non-supplier of Parañaque City and the price of walis tingting in Las Piñas City,” the SC said.

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