Controversy on Villa Corito concrete fence, Ombudsman cleared Casurra, Geotina, et al on raps

Former Mayor Pons Casurra
The Office of the Ombudsman Mindanao has dismissed the criminal charge filed by complainants Atty. Jerry Centro and Dominador Deluvio against former City Mayor Pons Casurra, former City Engineer Maria Geotina and private respondents Zenon Eupena, Claro Luis Garcia, Inigo Lo and Mario Jasmin, all residents of the Villa Corito Subdivision, this city.

In its resolution dated September 8, 2009 and approved by Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon Mark E. Jalandoni on June 11, 2010, the Office Ombudsman found the evidence presented by complainants Centro and Deluvio as insufficient to charge the respondents of violating R.A. 3019, otherwise known as the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

The case stemmed after the Villa Corito Subdivision Homeowners Association constructed a concrete fence cutting across its boundary towards the riverbank area and was objected by the complainants citing among others that the said fence would isolate the real properties they own in the area.

Centro and Deluvio accused former City Mayor Casurra and former City Engineer Geotina to have conspired in the construction of the said concrete fence with the private respondents and further accused Casurra to have acted with manifest partiality, evident bad faith and gross inexcusable negligence in extending assistance to the Homeowners Association in the construction of the said fence.

In its findings, the Ombudsman said: that all the accusations of Centro and Deluvio are not supported by any evidence. The act of City Mayor Casurra in extending assistance to the homeowners by way of providing labor in clearing the area may not be categorized as being attendant with bad faith or gross negligence, considering that being the city chief executive, his position calls on him to extend assistance to the people within his locality, especially if the same would contribute to the welfare and well-being of his contituents.

Earlier, the said office has also dismissed the administrative complaint filed by the same complainants Centro and Deluvio against former City Mayor Casurra and former City Engineer Maria Geotina over the same issue of the construction of concrete fence located in the Villa Corito Subdivision.

The criminal complaint was filed in 2008 and docketed as Case No. OMB-M-C-08-0030-A for Violation of R.A.No. 3019. (Natz Corbeta, Karaga News Central)

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