CITY of San Fernando, Pampanga -- Gov. Lilia “Nanay” Pineda has warned the public, particularly those seeking medical and financial assistance from the provincial government, against fixers who prey on unsuspecting victims.
Pineda said she had received information that these fixers introduce themselves as government employees or as having direct contacts to the governor’s office and make guarantee that financial assistance would be released in 2 to 3 days and charge their victims a certain amount of money.
Recently, one Julio Esguerra Paquiao Jr. fell victim to these fixers and paid P20,000 with the hope to discharge his brother who was hospitalized in a private hospital here.
Paquiao identified one Rodalyn Yumul Ignacio and her mother Digna Ignacio as the persons constantly transacting with them. Rodalyn posed as a Department of Social Welfare and Development (DSWD) staff and promised to pay the entire hospital bill with the aid of Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO).
He also reported that Rodalyn instructed Paquiao to submit medical documents and a “partial payment” of P20,000 to supposedly speed up the settlement of hospital bills.
“Nagbigay po kami ng pera sa kanya kasi sabi po n’ya (Rodalyn Ignacio) nagtatrabaho po siya kay Nanay (Gov. Lilia Pineda) kaya nagtiwala po kami,” Paquiao said.
Later, it was discovered that Rodalyn proceeded to the governor’s office, bringing valid medical documents gathered from the victim and claimed the medical assistance amounting to P10,000 posing as the victim’s wife.
Paquiao and his family dared to go directly to the governor’s office to seek help after weeks of no calls and text messages from the suspects intensifying their suspicion.
“Sa ganitong sitwasyon ginamit nila ang pangalan ni governor para manloko, dapat talaga silang ma-nagot,” he said.
The governor reiterated that no amount should be imposed to anyone seeking any kind of assistance from the provincial government and that official transactions are done at all government offices with authorized personnel only.
In the war against fixers, syndicates and fake professionals, the general public is urged to report any suspicious invidual or transaction to the provincial government, she said.
The victim already filed a complaint against the two suspects for violation of Republic Act 9485, otherwise known as the “Anti-Red Tape Act of 2007”, with the possibility of imprisonment not exceeding six years or a fine not less than P20,000 but not more than P200,000 or both at the discretion of the court.