DAVAO del Norte Representative Antonio Floirendo Jr. yesterday asked permission from the Sandiganbayan to allow him to go to Turkey with Speaker Gloria MAcapagal-Arroyo.
Floirendo told the Sixth Division that he intends to attend the Asian Parliamentary Assembly with the Speaker.
The solon said he is part of the delegation of Arroyo for the 2nd Executive Council and 11th Plenary Sessions of the Assembly from November 27 to December 3.
Floirendo said his political officer only informed him of the invitation on November 19 from the Office of the Speaker.
The office of the House Speaker issued the travel authority on November 20, according to Floirendo.
Accused of graft, Floirendo assured the Sandiganbayan that he will be back in the country to face the charges.
“Accused makes this motion in good faith and for a valid reason,” Floirendo said.
“In fact, the records of this case will show that the accused has promptly complied with all the conditions set by this Honorable Court in connection with his previous travels abroad which were allowed,” said Floirendo adding he already bought the plane ticket.
Floirendo faces a graft case over his alleged financial interest in the Joint Venture Agreement (JVA) between Tagum Agricultural Development Authority (TADECO), where Floirendo’s family is a major stockholder, and its subsidiary Anflo Management and Investment Corporation, for the lease of land at the Davao Penal Colony to be used as a banana plantation.
The JVA was executed in 1979 which extended the period of lease for 25 years and renewed in May 2003 for another 25 years.
The complainant, Davao del Norte Rep. Pantaleon Alvarez, claimed Floirendo was already a House member at the time the contract was renewed and that he is a stockholder of TADECO in 2003 despite being in punlic office.