Susundan! House to suspend Floirendo if ordered


by Xave Gregorio

The House of Representatives would suspend Davao del Norte 2nd District Rep. Antonio Floirendo if the Sandiganbayan says so.

“The HOR in the 17th Congress, under the leadership of Speaker Alvarez, has respected and implemented all 90-day mandatory preventive suspension orders issued by the Sandiganbayan against its Members as in the cases of Reps. [Ruffy] Biazon, [Amado] Espino, [Luis Raymund] Villafuerte and [Geronimo] Treñas,” House Majority Leader Rudolfo Fariñas said in a text message to reporters.

Floirendo is currently facing graft charges over a supposedly disadvantageous land deal between his family’s Tagum Agricultural Development Co., Inc. and the Bureau of Corrections.

The case was filed by ally-turned-bitter foe House Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez, who also launched a congressional probe on the allegedly anomalous land deal.

Public officers charged with graft must face a 90-day suspension when the Sandiganbayan finds probable cause to pursue trial of the case.

Biazon was suspended for 90 days in 2016 over his alleged involvement in the P10 billion pork barrel scam.

Espino was also suspended in 2016 over his involvement in illegal black sand mining when he was still governor of Pangasinan.

In the same year, Villafuerte was suspended for the allegedly anomalous purchase of P20 million in petroleum products for Camarines Sur.

Treñas was suspended in January for allegedly releasing P500,000 for the construction of the Iloilo Press Club when he was mayor in 2003.