By Czarina Nicole Ong-Ki
Shariff Saydona Mustapha Mayor Datu Sajid Islam Ampatuan will be arraigned on August 30 before two different divisions of the Sandiganbayan.
His arraignment before the Third Division for his graft and malversation through falsification charges was initially scheduled on Friday, but he asked that it be moved in light of the 10th anniversary of the municipality of Shariff Saydona Mustapha, which will be celebrated from August 22 to 30.
Ampatuan further asked that it be scheduled for 10 a.m., because he will also have an arraignment before the First Division, also for graft and malversation through falsification, at 8:30 a.m.
The Third Division granted his motion in open court on Friday without any objection from the prosecution.
Ampatuan has been slapped with a violation of Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act and a violation of Article 217 and 171, paragraph 2, in relation to Article 28 of the Revised Penal Code, otherwise known as Malversation through Falsification of Public Documents before the Third Division.
On June 3, 2009, Ampatuan reportedly conspired with his co-accused and misappropriated P98,249,850 worth of public funds. The money was supposed to be used to purchase palay, corn, seeds and fertilizers from Tamoni Enterprises. However, no such purchases were made.
Meanwhile, Ampatuan has been slapped with four counts of graft and another four counts of malversation through falsification before the First Division.
On April 30, 2009, Ampatuan reportedly procured rice, sardines, brown sugar and dried fish from Nestor Merchandise amounting to P29,851,833. On June 30 and August 28, he procured the same food supplies from H&S Merchandise amounting to P30,341,878 and P12,875,658, respectively. Lastly, on September 30, he bought P6,681,675 worth of food supplies from Isulan & General Merchandise.
But in truth, no such purchases were really made from the suppliers.