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Saturday, July 13, 2024

Duterte fires NEA chief over allegations of graft

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President Rodrigo Duterte has fired National Electrification Administration (NEA) Administrator Edgardo Masongsong for allegedly allowing electric cooperatives to contribute funds for the campaign of a party-list organization in the 2019 elections.

Duterte said he based his decision on the recommendation of the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC).

“I dismissed him from public service. The PACC conducted an investigation and made the recommendation for his dismissal. So, I have approved,” the President said.

“We are not bragging about it but we are trying our best to cope up with the situation regarding graft and corruption in our government,” he added.

In May, the PACC said it had filed a case against Masongsong before the Office of the Ombudsman over his supposed inaction on the alleged use of public funds for the campaign activities of the Philippine Rural Electric Cooperatives Association (Philreca) party-list.

Masongsong, who has yet to receive a formal notice of his dismissal, said the allegations against him have no basis.

“These are allegations that I have addressed in the course of the PACC’s inquiry into these accusations, and the records will show that I have fully cooperated with the PACC – fully confident in the knowledge that these allegations are baseless, and that if granted due process and the opportunity to defend myself I can establish that I am innocent of any wrongdoing,” he said in a statement.

“I am ready to turn over my responsibilities to whomever is designated as NEA Officer in Charge once I am ordered to do so – to ensure that the services of NEA continue smoothly for the benefit of the electric cooperatives (ECs) and the consumers the NEA is mandated to serve,” Masongson added.

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