Davao Del Norte 2nd District Representative Antonio Floirendo Jr. has appealed to the Sandiganbayan 6th Division to quash the graft charge against him concerning the alleged anomalous land lease deal between his family’s Tagum Agricultural Development Corporation (TADECO) and the Bureau of Corrections (BuCor).
“The Constitution does not penalize mere financial interest by a member of Congress in a private enterprise having a contract with the government but penalizes a member for financial interest as would conflict with his duties as a legislator,” read his motion for reconsideration.
The graft case stemmed from the complaint filed by Davao Del Norte 1st District Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez who accused Floirendo of having “a direct financial or pecuniary interest” in the deal under a 2003 multi-million peso joint venture agreement (JVA) which allowed TADECO to lease from the BuCor a 5,000-hectare land at the Davao Prison and Penal Farm (DAPECOL) in Davao del Norte as a banana plantation.
Alvarez said the Constitution prohibits a lawmaker to intervene in any government contracts before any agency for his pecuniary benefit during his term of office.
The Speaker alleged TADECO has as its major stockholder Floirendo’s family and Anflo Management and Investment Corporation (ANFLOCOR) which also has large shares from the same family.
He indicated that when the 2003 JVA was reached Floirendo was still representative of the 2nd District of Davao del Norte.