The Office of the Ombudsman (OMB) is set to probe Albay Rep. Edcel Lagman over his alleged ill-gotten wealth from his supposed Priority Development Assistance Funds (PDAF), also known as pork barrel. Bishop Hernando Bruce filed a graft case against him last April, citing a report from the Commission on Audit (COA). He later elevated it to plunder.
Through a 4-page supplemental affidavit submitted by Bishop Bruce before the OMB, Rep. Edcel Lagman received a total of P240 million from his PDAF from 2007 to 2010, during his first term as Congressman of 1st district of Albay. Rep. Lagman’s daughter, Tabaco City Mayor Krisel Lagman-Luistro is also included in the case as his conspirator.
As mentioned in the complaint, Rep. Lagman also allegedly acquired several properties which includes the following:
* P500 million-worth Patio De San Jose hotel in Malilipot, Albay which was allegedly registered under Lagman’s purported dummy, a contractor in Bicol named Rose Bombales
* A 10-hectare gravel and sand rock crusher plant in Sogod, Bacacay, Albay with an estimated value of P50 million, allegedly named under an unidentified dummy
* A heavy equipment garage in Barangay 14 Bacacay, under the name of De San Jose Builders Inc., also owned by Bombales
* A $30-million worth mansion in the United States
* A mansion in Tagaytay worth P50 million
Rep.Lagman also allegedly acquired extended loans from his PDAF to two private organizations – P1.5 million to San Carlos Agro-Industrial Multi-Purpose Cooperative (SACAMCO), and P134,000 to Bacolod-Tayhi Homeworks Association, Inc. He also allegedly gave P1.2 million to various barangays despite having no formal requests.
And finally, Lagman is also being accused of giving financial assistance worth P129 million for various projects in Tabaco City when his daughter Krisel was still the city mayor. A two-term congresswoman in Albay just like her father, Krisel Lagman-Luistro lost her mayoralty bid in 2013, but won again in the recent 2016 elections under the Liberal Party (LP).
Nevertheless, Rep. Edcel Lagman has already denied all the allegations against him and his daughter. Despite being known for sponsoring Republic Act No. 10354 or the controversial RH Law, he is also a huge critic of the Marcoses. Recently, he has been very vocal in criticizing President Rodrigo Duterte, and described him as “dictator in the making.”