ORMOC CITY, Leyte, Nov. 30 PNA) – A city official here denied that there is corruption in the distribution of emergency shelter assistance (ESA) for typhoon victims in this city.

City administrator Francis Pepito confirmed that some groups are spreading rumors about anomalies in the ESA distribution to confuse the public especially that it’s already election season.

In this city, the most common allegation is that Mayor Edward C. Codilla is using the ESA funds to boost his campaign war chest, according to Pepito.

“That is malicious and nonsense. Only stupid people would say that. But those who use their brains know that is impossible and we know that to be true,” Pepito said, as he explained the processes the ESA funds had to go through.

“There is a long process and along the way, the mayor doesn’t get to touch any of the money. In the accounting procedure alone, the treasurer and most especially the auditor – all have strict requirements. Step-by-step, safety nets are put in place so that nothing is lost even the last centavo. So it’s impossible for local officials to make money out of it,” he explained.

Pepito doesn’t believe there is corruption both on the national and local levels as far as the ESA is concerned. “But we’re not dirty-minded. We know for a fact that it is not true. It is impossible to steal money from the ESA,” he concluded.

To recall, Ormoc was allocated Php689.36 million from the Comprehensive Rehabilitation Recovery Plan (CRRP) for ESA for 52,325 families. (PNA)