Clark chief sued for cyber libel

October 15, 2019

CLARK FREEPORT, Pampanga – Two counts of cyber libel were filed before the Ombudsman against the president of the Clark Development Corporation (CDC) in connection with the “notices to the public” he posted on Facebook two months ago.

Renato Mendiola Jr., proprietor of RMJ Construction company, also charged CDC president and chief executive officer Noel Manankil of grave abuse of authority, conduct prejudicial to best interest of service and gross misconduct.

In his complaint, Mendiola said that Manankil posted at 3:16 p.m. and at 3:36 p.m. on August 16, 2019 in the CDC Facebook account notices to the public that “a certain Renato ‘Rene’ O. Mendiola Jr., made it appear to the public that he is connected and in a position to influence any employee or officer of the Corporation for personal gain.”

“For the record, the said person is neither an employee nor officer or in any way connected to the Corporation. We have never sanctioned nor do we condone any of these alleged transactions or activities. If you have knowledge of any of these alleged transactions or activities, please report it immediately to the CDC Whistleblowing Web Portal or any of the alternative reporting channels,” the post, signed by Manankil, stated.

Mendiola said a reading of the two Facebook posts would reveal that Manankil is insinuating that the complainant has connection and can influence any employee or officer of CDC for personal gain or benefit.

“In a nutshell, I am being branded as an influence peddler, which is illegal under existing laws. Aside from that, he (Manankil) clearly insinuated in the said notices to the public that I have committed and continuing to commit the crime of estafa or swindling punishable under Article 315, Paragraph 2, Sub-paragraph A, when he claimed that I am falsely pretending to possess power and influence for purposes of personal gain or benefit,” Mendiola said.

He said that the “derogatory” notices to the public using Facebook, a social media which is utilized by billions of people around the world through the internet, constitute a cybercrime offense specifically provided under Republic Act 10175 and Article 353 of the Revised Penal Code.

The complainant said that the imputation made against him by Manankil caused discredit and dishonor upon his person.

People’s Journal tried to get the side of Manankil on the complaint filed against him via an email sent to the CDC.

CDC communication manager Noel Tulabut sent a reply last Monday afternoon.

“CDC has yet to receive a copy of the complaint from the Ombudsman. Once officially received, that is the time we can issue statement,” Tulabot said.