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MABINI, Bohol – Local officials here led by then Mayor Esther Tabigue, and former vice-mayor and now Mayor Jun Jayoma are asked by COA to refund the money they spent for ‘Lakbay-aral’ program, barangay Minol chairman Edgar Tumanda, one of those who took part in the tour, said in his radio program last week.
Incumbent Vice-Mayor Jesha C. Toque confirmed this. “True, including the incumbent mayor and SB members and defeated former officials, department heads and MNC members,” she said in her text to Bohol News Today. But she did not mention how much each official will reimburse the government of this town.
Tumanda’s fears, if not prediction, came to be true. He told BNT earlier that he expected sanction will be imposed against them for traveling outside the place allowed them to visit. He earlier said in vernacular that “Posibling magtapal sa gasto kadtong mga mikuyog sa Lakbay aral sa Legaspi City milahus sa Manila nga gihimo niadtong June 23-27, 2015.”
He said that some officials spent their own money and now they’re made to repay the government.
Tumanda said that some 70 joined in the Lakbay-aral, including municipal councilors, casual employees, Department of Education, police officers and leaders of people’s organization and barangay chairmen, may also be implicated to refund.
“Kon wa ko masayop, mga labing minus 70 ka mga tawo ang mikuyog niadto,” Tumanda said.
Each participant in the Lakbay-aral spent at least Php17,000 to a total of more or less Php1.3 million, he said.
For barangay officials who participated in the tour chipped in only a total of Php10,000 and the balance was counter-parted by the municipal government, he said.
With him was Kagawad Beato Ladaran, chair of the Barangay Disaster Risk Reduction management committee, he said.
Tumanda said that after the travel he was warned by the municipal accountant Wel Busano that their travel was problematic.
The accountant’s comment came after the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) questioned the said travel, which was supposedly up only to Legaspi city but the group proceeded to Manila in the absence of a legal authority.
Tumanda said that he caused the posting of this scenario on his account because the people deserve to know. “Nganung ako ning gipost dinhi sa facebook? Kay ang mga katawhan dunay katungod nga masayod. Arun nga sa panig usab sa mga opsiyales sa barangay dili ki maakusahan nga nag-usik-usik sa kuarta” even he is included in the junket.
Tumanda expressed thanks and consolation to the mayor and other officials for initiating the travel personally he was able to see Mayon volcano that is now spewing lava.
Tumanda also quoted one of the companions, having said and thankful for having on board an airplane (from Manila to Bohol) for the first time in his life.
He said in jest that if ever COA would require them to make refund it’s just like that they’re being hit by volcano’s eruption figuratively.
BNT tried contact incumbent Vice-Mayor Jesha C. Toque and Mayor Jayoma for their comments but to no avail yesterday. (rvo)
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