Former Bukidnon congressman Neric Acosta files contempt charges against critics

BUKIDNON ONLINE | BUKIDNON NEWS | CONTROVERSIAL – Seems like the feud is really far from over. Form Bukidnon First District congressman and defeated Liberal Party senatorial candidate Neric Acosta has filed contempt charges before the Sandiganbayan against Fr. Venancio Balansag, Jr. of Bishop’s House along Mampaalong Street, Malaybalay City, Felix Vergara, Jr. of the Bukidnon Crusade Against Crime and Corruption, Philippine Star Vice President for Advertising Lucien Dy-Tioco and several others.

Acosta slammed his critics for allegedly discussing merits of pending cases filed against him in an effort to block his appointment as cabinet secretary.

Acosta was a strong contender to replace Ramon Paje as Secretary of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR). A few weeks before his alleged appointment, however, full page ads as well as open letters were published on national broadsheets. The ads were about pending cases filed against him at the Sandiganbayan.

In a statement, Acosta said that all those were part of a smear campaign against him.

Then, a few days later, Senator Juan Miguel Zubiri, widely known as one of Acosta’s longtime political foes, delivered a privilege speech before the Senate asking for President Benigno Aquino III not to appoint individuals who have court cases, among others. Senator Migs Zubiri said that this should be done in keeping with PNoy’s call for a “Daang Matuwid.” Read Senator Miguel Zubiri’s full speech here.

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Aside from Balansag, Vergara (who is also a board member of the First Bukidnon Electric Cooperative) and Dy-Tioco, the other respondents of the case filed by Acosta are:

Commission on Audit (COA) auditor Carlo Matias, a certain “Rolly” (who allegedly paid for the newspaper ads) and Manolo Fortich, Bukidnon residents Divino O. Bornidor Jr. and Maria Emma B. Lee.

Acosta asked the court to impose a month’s imprisonment against the respondents of the case plus a P5,000 fine against each of the respondents.

Meanwhile, various manifestos of support for Acosta have been released. One of them was from the Mindanao Coalition for Neric Acosta, which was printed here on BukidnonOnline.com

Also, BukidnonOnline.com ran a mini-survey among its readers to ask whether they wanted Acosta to be appointed DENR Secretary. The results, which can be found here, show that more people wanted Acosta to be appointed as DENR Secretary.

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