Pichay et al ordered disqualified from public service

Posted at 07/04/11 1:44 PM

MANILA, Philippines (UPDATE) - The Office of the Ombudsman has ordered Local Water Utilities (LWUA) chairman Prospero Pichay and 2 other high-ranking officials dismissed from service for the questionable purchase of the capital stock of Express Savings Bank, Inc.

The 2 others dismissed from service are: Acting Administrator Daniel Landingin and Acting Deputy Administrator Wilfredo Feleo.

Acting Ombudsman Orlando Casimiro found all 3 liable for grave misconduct.

“As such, the penalty dismissal from service with the accessory penalties of perpetual disqualification from public service and forfeiture of all benefits is imposed upon them,” the Office of the Ombudsman said.

The order is immediately executory.

The issue stemmed from the allegedly unlawful disbursement of P80 million for the 60% shares of the ESBI.

This was supposedly sanctioned without any memorandum of agreement and without any go-signal from the Monetary Board of the Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas.

In an interview with ANC, Pichay said he will question the decision before the Court of Appeals. A petition is also currently lodged there questioning their earlier suspension for the same case.

“I was expecting [the order]…He’s been busy filing cases versus former Cabinet officials…I think he wants to become the next Ombudsman, he wants to be endeared [to the administration],” he said.

He said the charges have no legal basis. The money used for the purchase did not come from the national budget, he said.

The transaction was also given the green light by the Office of the President during President Gloria Macapagal Arroyo’s time, he added.

He added the rule on the prior approval of the Monetary Board should have been directed to the bank.