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Bishop Arigo exposes Malampaya funds scam in ‘Krusada’ this Thursday

This is something close to my heart so I am asking you guys to watch “Krusada” on Abs-cbn tonight, October 25.

Bishop Pedro Arigo ~ File Photo

In tonight’s episode, broadcast journalist Henry Omaga-Diaz will look into the alleged misuse of revenue generated from the Malampaya natural gas project in my home province, Palawan.

Our friend and a known advocate for justice and environment in Palawan, Bishop Pedro Arigo of the Vicariate of Puerto Princesa will expose the irregularities from the bidding until the implementation of the project.

The Malampaya natural gas project, which extracts natural gas from the waters of Palawan has earned $8.9 billion since 2002, according to Congress, Abs-cbn said in a press statement.

The Malampaya funds has financed projects of government agencies that have nothing to do with energy development, according to the report released by the Commission on Audit (COA) recently, it added.

Only a small fraction of the funds was used for electrification of communities in the province aside from it has also funded ghost projects and the overpricing of road and bridge repair in the provincial government and congressional districts of Palawan.

Main Motive For Gerry Ortega’s Murder

“The Ortega Family firmly believes that the misuse of the Malampaya funds is the main motive for the murder of my father, Doc Gerry Ortega,” says Michaella Ortega, eldest daughter of the slain journalist.

“My father was relentless in his commentaries and criticisms of the Provincial Government over Malampaya Funds anomalies,” Michaella added.

Former Palawan governor Mario Joel Reyes and his brother, former Coron town Mayor Mario Reyes were believed to have ordered Ortega’s murder. The two are currently on the government’s most wanted list with P2-million pesos reward.

When I visited Palawan this Sunday, I saw this photo of the Reyeses posted on a wall at the Airport. For those who don’t know the political landscape of Palawan, Joel Reyes was a three-term governor of Palawan before he lost to Rep. Dennis Socrates of the first district when he ran for congress last election. However, his wife, Fems Reyes is currently the province’s Vice Governor.

Wanted-Joel-Reyes-and-Mario-Reyes

This “Most Wanted” photo showing faces of former Palawan Governor Joel Reyes and his brother, former Coron town mayor Mario Reyes is currently displayed inside Puerto Princesa City airport as they are nowhere to be found after raps against them over the killing of Palawan journalist Gerry Ortega were filed. ~ Photo by Ely Valendez

I don’t know how “Krusada” would tackle this issue tonight but it’s a good thing that this will be discussed on a national television for the world to know. Krusada airs after “Bandila”. You may watch it earlier on DZMM TeleRadyo (SkyCable Channel 26), 9:15 p.m. For updates on the program, check out @krusadaTV on Twitter, www.facebook.com/Krusada and www.abs-cbnnews.com/krusada.

About author

Ely Valendez

Ely Valendez is an award-winning blogger-journalist based in the Philippines. He handles several social media marketing projects for various brands in his home country as well as for a US-based IT/e-commerce company, PCM where he works full time. He uses his spare time doing financial consultancy for a UK-based company. He also sits as member of the Board of Directors of the Philippines Communication Society and serves as a web manager and resource person of the Philippine Press Institute.

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