114 officials in region dismissed-A A +A
Wednesday, January 22, 2014
ABOUT 114 public officials in the Visayas were dismissed from service after they were found liable for various administrative offenses in the past three years, records from the Office of the Ombudsman-Visayas showed.
The anti-graft office sacked 36 government workers in 2011; dismissed 41 public workers in 2012; and fired 37 state workers last year.
The Ombudsman Visayas also suspended 248 government workers from 2011 to 2013 for various administrative violations. Of this number, 56 public workers were suspended in 2011; 105 state personnel in 2012 and 87 government employees in 2013.
Deputy Ombudsman Pelagio Apostol said that most of the dismissed public officials committed gross misconduct or serious dishonesty.
“Those administrative violations are usually the cause of their dismissal from the service,” Apostol told Sun. Star Cebu.
Malversation of public funds or falsification of public documents involving huge amount of government money are considered serious dishonesty, said Apostol.
He said government workers who displayed conduct that is “grossly prejudicial to the interest of government” may be dismissed.
“When you are a government official, you should project that image even outside of your office,” said Apostol.
Of the 3,062 criminal complaints for disposition from 2011 to 2013, the Visayas Ombudsman resolved 2,090 cases. About 1,491 criminal cases were either dismissed or closed for lack of evidence.
The anti-graft office filed 52 criminal cases before the Sandiganbayan from 2011 to 2013, while 376 criminal cases were filed in the regular courts in the same year.
About 71 criminal cases were also referred to other government agencies, such as the Department of Justice.
In administrative cases, Apostol said the complaints are usually referred to the Civil Service Commission.
In some instances, he said some cases may be referred to the public officials’ agency, which also has concurrent jurisdiction over its personnel.
Apostol said the anti-graft office handles graft and corruption cases even if the public official involved does not hold a high-ranking position, as long as the funds involved are big.
“Tthe ombudsman has jurisdiction over public officials relative to his job, or even outside of their official function,” said Apostol. Some 106 criminal cases were referred to other ombudsman offices for lack of jurisdiction.
The anti-graft office resolved 2,570 administrative charges out of 3,593 administrative cases for disposition from 2011 to 2013.
The Visayas Ombudsman also dismissed 1,754 administrative cases from 2011 to 2013; referred 100 cases to other government agencies and referred 167 cases to other ombudsman offices.
The Visayas Ombudsman has a total of 368 pending criminal and administrative cases.
Apostol said some of pending cases are due to the delay in the submission of report by other government agencies, such as the Commission on Audit.
Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on January 22, 2014.