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Mitra denies coddling Reyes’ coaccused

Please allow me to call attention to an unfair and misleading report titled “Coddling of accused in Ortega slay bared” (Across the Nation, 7/13/13), written by Redempto D. Anda.

The story suggested that as governor of Palawan province, who succeeded former Gov. Joel T. Reyes, I coddled his coaccused in the Ortega murder case by retaining him as an employee of the provincial government and entitling him to his salaries even while in detention.

It was unfair for Anda to say that I was not available to comment on the CIDG (Criminal Investigation and Detection Group) report. I have not read the report and it was never brought to my attention. Anda did not bother at all to even send me an SMS to comment on the alleged CIDG report before it was published; he could have easily called me, which he did anytime in the past.

Had Anda been diligent enough to seek my comment, he would have been told that as of June 8, 2012, Arturo Regalado, an accused in the Ortega murder case, had been dropped from the roll of employees for prolonged absence, pursuant to Memorandum No. 130-130 that I myself issued. After that, Regalado no longer received any salary from the provincial government. In fact, even before that, he was not getting his salaries as he was no longer reporting for work.

Had Anda been diligent enough, as expected of an Inquirer reporter, his report would have been accurate and fair.

—ABRAHAM KAHLIL B. MITRA,

former governor,

Province of Palawan

I sent former Governor Mitra an SMS at exactly 1:42 p.m. of July 12, 2013, before filing my story. I cc’d the message to my bureau chief, Edra Benedicto, who can therefore attest to this. Governor Mitra chose not to reply to the message.

—REDEMPTO ANDA,

Inquirer Southern Luzon

correspondent for Palawan


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