17 Aklan officials face charges for neglecting Boracay

Seventeen public officials in the province of Aklan are facing criminal and administrative charges for allegedly neglecting Boracay Island.

Yesterday, the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) filed the charges before the Office of the Ombudsman.

Respondents in the complaint are the following:

  • Governor Florencio Miraflores
  • Provincial Environment and Natural Resources Officer Valentin Talabero (appointive)
  • Mayor Ciceron Cawaling
  • Vice Mayor Abram Sualog
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Natalie Cawaling-Paderes
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Jupiter Alfred Gallenero
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Frolibar Bautista
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Lloyd Maming
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Dalidig Sumndad
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Maylynn Aguirre-Graf
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Danilo delos Santos
  • Sanggunian Bayan Member Dante Pagsuguiron
  • Licensing Officer III Jen Salson (appointive)
  • Municipal Environment and Natural Resources Office Edgardo Sancho (appointive)
  • Barangay Captain Hector Casidsid of Barangay Yapak
  • Punong Barangay Chona Gabay of Barangay Manoc-Manoc
  • Punong Barangay Lilibeth Sacapaño of Barangay Balabag

These local officials, based on the complaint, violated the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and the Local Government Code.

“They are liable for the Boracay mess,” said DILG Undersecretary Epimaco Densing.

According to him, the respondents allowed irresponsible businessmen to operate in Boracay.

“May mga inissuehan ng Mayor’s Permits kahit hindi pa kumpleto ang documents. Meron din na nagooperate kahit wala pang permits at hinayaan nila ito,” Densing said.

The inter-agency task force composed of representatives of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR), Department of Tourism (DOT), and Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) discovered that only 95 out of more than 2,000 establishments on the island are fully compliant with the law.

DILG-6 Director Anthony Nuyda said they are still waiting for a copy of the complaint filed against the 17 Aklan officials.

The world-famous island was closed to tourists on April 26. The six-month shutdown aims to rehabilitate the 1,032-hectare island, which was described by President Rodrigo Duterte as a “cesspool.IMT