The committee on good government and public accountability at the House of Representatives has given Ilocos Norte Governor Imee Marcos until July 25 to appear in the hearing or face arrest.
The inquiry, the fourth one, is looking into alleged irregularities in the purchase of motor vehicles worth P66.4 million by the Ilocos Norte provincial government. The purchases were made through cash advances allegedly without public bidding and using the province’s tobacco excise tax collection share.
Representative Johnny Pimentel of Surigao del Sur, chairperson of the committee, said the panel would subpoena Marcos to appear in the next hearing. If she does not appear, then the committee will issue a warrant for her arrest, the lawmaker added.
On May 29, the committee ordered the detention at the Batasan Complex of six Ilocos Norte government employees who have refused to respond to questions relating to the purchase of vehicles.
The Ilocos 6 – Genedine Jambaro, Encarnacion Gaor, Josephine Calajate, Eden Battulayan, Evangeline Tabuluog, and Pedro Agcaoili, Jr. – have filed a motion for provisional release or release on bail before the Court of Appeals.
The appellate court has ordered the House to present the six employees, but Speaker Pantaleon Alvarez defied the order.
The House panel has also ordered the appellate court justices handling the case to show cause and explain in writing why they should not be cited in contempt by the committee.