Gapo kagawad nabbed amid probe on SAP scams

AMID their continuing investigation of 183 barangay officials for alleged anomalies in the distribution of the government’s Social Amelioration Program, agents of the Philippine National Police Criminal Investigation and Detection on Monday arrested a ‘kagawad’ in Olongapo City accused of extorting money from a poor SAP beneficiary.

PNP-CIDG director, Major General Joel Napoleon M. Coronel identified the suspect as Marcialo Mendoza, a 41-year-old Executive Officer or Ex-O of Bgy. New Cabalan Hall in Purok 2, Olongapo City.

According to the official, local CIDG operatives arrested the barangay official at 5:30 p.m. last Monday following a complaint from Jonahdeal Licudini, a local resident.

The complainant said the accused demanded P3,000 from the SAP financial aid she would be receiving from the barangay and said the money would be given to their officials.

The woman sought the assistance of the CIDG in arresting the suspect after the accused reportedly pestered her with his demand.

Around 4:30 p.m. Monday, the suspect met the complainant at the New Cabalan national highway where he took the marked money placed inside an envelope and immediately sped off on board his vehicle giving the undercover officers no chance to arrest him.

A follow-up operation led in the arrest of the suspect right inside the New Cabalan barangay hall. Recovered from his possession was the marked money.

On Tuesday, PNP chief, General Archie Francisco F. Gamboa ordered the PNP-CIDG to pursue all cases against the 183 barangay officials accused of irregularities in the distribution of SAP funds.

“All those complaints are now being investigated by the CIDG. They’re looking on what cases can be filed, mostly violation of the anti-graft and corrupt practices act,” the top cop said.