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Abad, Batanelco never part of Napoles scam

12:02 AM June 03, 2014

We have read in major dailies that Janet Napoles implicated Secretary Florencio B. Abad (former congressman of the lone district of Batanes) and the Batanes Electric Cooperative (Batanelco) in the PDAF (Priority Development Assistance Fund) scam, alleging that  in 2000, Abad downloaded P10 million of his PDAF to Batanelco.

The allegations are without factual basis.

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Our record shows that Batanelco received the following subsidies: (1) P3.860 million for the construction of distribution lines for:

(a) Taytay Kayhuvokan Basco Radar Station; (b) Sitio Tukon, Basco; (c) Babat Tunga, Basco; (d) Sitio Disvayangan, Mahatao; and (e) Sitio Diura, Mahatao, all in the province of Batanes. The fund was released on Jan. 12, 2000;

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(2) P3,452 million for rural electrification projects for the province of Batanes; and

(3) P1.783 million for the rehabilitation of distribution lines damaged by Typhoons “Loleng” and “Iliang” (released on Jan. 13, 2000). These funds were directly downloaded as financial subsidies by the National Electrification Administration (NEA) to Batanelco, without a special allotment release order (Saro).

These projects were duly implemented by Batanelco, inspected by the NEA and audited by the Commission on Audit (COA).

Batanelco was never a recipient of a  P10-million fund with Saro, contrary to the

allegation of  Napoles in her statement.

Secretary Abad and Batanelco have been collaborating since 1989 to provide stable and adequate electricity supply to the people of Batanes. To this day, there has never been any complaint of irregularity and anomaly. We vehemently deny the allegations of Napoles and strongly condemn her implicating Abad and Batanelco in the PDAF scam.

We are natives of Batanes and we personally know Abad as a very simple, honest and prudent man living a very simple lifestyle and never known as corrupt.

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Contrary to what Napoles stated in her affidavit, Batanelco is not the implementing arm for Abad’s PDAF-backed projects, except for the rural electrification-related projects.

Also, our records show that our cooperative has never been involved in the PDAF scam masterminded by Napoles. The NEA can prove that we are one of the best-run electric cooperatives in the entire country.

—QUIRINO F. GABOTERO JR., president,

VICTORIA A. MATA, general manager, WILFREDO D. CABITAC, past president, Batanes Electric Cooperative Inc.

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