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Sandigan orders Misuari’s arrest

THE Sandiganbayan has ordered the arrest of Moro National Liberation Front founder Nur Misuari even as it issued a hold departure order against him in connection with the alleged anomalous purchase of educational materials worth P115.2 million from 2000 to 2001 when he was governor of the Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

In six separate orders, the Sandiganbayan Third Division also directed the Bureau of Immigration to hold the departure of Misuari and seven of his co-accused “to preserve and maintain the effectiveness of its (court’s) jurisdiction over the case/s and the person/s of the accused so as to render accused at all times amenable to its writs and processes.”

Aside from Misuari, the HDO was also issued against then Department of Education Armm director Leovigilda Cinches, chief accountant Pangalian Maniri, Sittie Aisa Usman, Deped Armm accountant Alladin Usi, Commissioner on Audit Armm resident auditor Nader Macagaan, and private individuals Cristeta Ramirez and Lolita Sambeli.

Misuari was charged with three counts each of violation of Section 3(e) of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act, and malversation through falsification for allegedly conspiring with his co-accused in giving unwarranted benefits, advantage and privilege to the following companies for the procurement of educational materials:

  • MBJ Learning Tools for an Information Technology package worth P31 million;
  • CPR Publishing for a Multi-media Information Technology package worth P46.26 million; and
  • White Orchids Printing and Publishing House for educational materials worth P37.59 million.

This, even though no such materials were delivered, the Ombudsman said.

The Ombudsman also alleged that the respondents conspired with one another to “take, appropriate or misappropriate” the said amounts by supposedly falsifying the corresponding procurement documents for the educational materials.

It said this was in order to make it appear that the procurements were made. (pna)

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