Pangasinan town mayor, 10 others cleared in land lease case
Malasiqui, Pangasinan Mayor Armando Domantay has been cleared of abuse of authority and grave misconduct charges over the alleged illegal land lease the municipal government extended to a private firm in 2009.
Aside from Domantay, the Ombudsman also absolved two incumbent councilors and eight former town officials in the complaint filed by a Payar village resident, Jaime Aquino, on July 16, 2009.
Aquino claimed Domantay and other town officials illegally converted a public lot in Poblacion area into a commercial lot and leased it to Magic Group of Companies.
Aquino contended that the Municipal Ordinance No. 005- 2003 known as “An ordinance withdrawing from public use to private use the area of 1, 800 square meters from the 10, 743 square meters lot located at Poblacion owned by the municipality of Malasiqui” was not approved by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) and was remanded to the municipal council in 2004.
But through municipal council resolution 02-2009, Domantay went on to execute a 40-year contract of lease with Magic.
The Ombudsman dismissed the case for lack of merit.
“Complainant failed to establish that the property subject of SB resolution no. 02- 2009 was previously used as a local road, alley, park or square that would require the withdrawal of the property from its public use before it can be alienated through lease. The records disclose that the property was vacant and unproductive,” the Ombudsman resolution read.
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