Diokno in-laws using ‘dummies’ — House leader

January 03, 2019
Benjamin Diokno

NAGA City -- The chairman of the House Committee on Rules yesterday said that Aremar Construction, which is owned by the in-laws of embattled Budget Secretary Benjamin Diokno, has been allegedly using big-time or triple A contractors as dummies like the Bulacan-based C.T. Leoncio Construction and Trading to corner and implement huge government projects.

During yesterday’s hearing at the Avenue Plaza Hotel in Magsaysay Avenue here on corruption allegations against Diokno’s questionable practices in the national budget, House Majority Leader and Camarines Sur Rep. Rolando “Nonoy” Andaya Jr., the panel chairman, questioned the bidding documents of C.T. Leoncio, tagged as favored contractor of the budget secretary, which has been using a single backhoe since May 2018 in the implementation of five sample projects in Sorsogon and only has three engineers for 40 projects.

“Moro-moro lang daw ang nangyayari sa bidding. Ang trabaho talaga ng triple A contractors, makuha ang kontrata at ipahiram ang lisensya sa totoong gagawa ng projects. Sa ating kaso ngayon, lumalabas na dummy lamang ang C.T. Leoncio. Ang totoong may-ari ng proyekto: ang Aremar Construction,” said Andaya.

Consolacion Leoncio, owner of C.T. Leoncio Construction and Trading, told the panel that she did not know the in-laws of Diokno and only his liaison officer Francis Clemente who has been preparing all the documents for her business.

The Andaya panel subpoenaed Clemente and advised Leoncio to talk to her liaison officer intently because she may find herself in serious trouble soon.

As expected, Diokno was a no show because he is in the United States.

Andaya presented an October 4, 2018 LandBank deposit slip worth P11.416-million sourced from his contractor friend that was allegedly deposited with Aremar Construction by another construction firm – not C.T. Lencio – that he did not identify after the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) released the money.

”I will share with you this piece of evidence. Deposit slip sa LandBank. From a contractor who won the bidding for a project in Bicol. After release of funds from DBM, the winning contractor deposited the money to the real contractor of the project: Aremar Construction. Look closely at the deposit slip: a total of P11,416,374 found its way to the bank account of Aremar on October 4, 2018,” said Andaya.

Andaya will ask the Anti Money Laundering Council (AMLC) to provide his panel the complete bank transactions of C.T. Leoncio Construction and other construction firms with Aremar Construction.

Last year, Aremar Construction Corp. entered into a joint-venture agreement with CT Leoncio Construction and Trading in the implementation of at least four major infrastructure projects in Sorsogon.

Aremar Construction is a duly-registered corporation with business address in Casiguran, Sorsogon and its biggest stockholder is Jose Edwin Hamor, the incumbent mayor of Casiguran.

Other incorporators are Maria Minez Hamor, Martin Aber Sicat, Maria Charisma Sicat, Romeo Sicat Jr., and Edmon Bautista.

Andaya said Romeo Sicat, also known as Jojo, is the husband of Charlotte Justine Diokno-Sicat.

Romeo Sicat is a son of Ester Hamor, vice governor of Sorsogon and now wife of Mayor Hamor.

“It is also clear that the Hamor couple are in-laws of Sec. Diokno. Sa tagalog, balae. Ayaw mang aminin ni Sec. Diokno, malinaw ang relasyon niya sa mga Hamor. Manugang ni Sec. Diokno si Romeo ‘Jojo’ Sicat Jr. Balae ni Sec. Diokno si Ester at Edwin Hamor,” said Andaya. But Mayor Hamor said he was not aware that his stepson was married to Diokno’s daughter, Charlotte Justine.

Edwin Hamor had admitted in a television interview with GMA-7 that their children are engaged in construction business and may have dealings with CT Leoncio Construction and Trading.