Thursday, March 30, 2017

Ex-Sibonga town mayor indicted for receiving honorarium illegally

The Office of the Ombudsman has ordered the indictment of former Sibonga town, Cebu Mayor Lionel Bacaltos for illegally receiving honorarium from the Philippine Health Insurance Corporation (PhilHealth).

This is in violation of Section 3(e) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act (Republic Act No. 3019).

According to the Resolution, in 2012, PhilHealth sponsored a health care program which provided for honorarium for the municipal health office personnel totaling P280,197.

In February 2015, Bacaltos included himself in the list of recipients of the honorarium despite not being a member of the municipal health office.

In resolving the case, the Ombudsman stated that “respondent cannot claim that he is part of the non-health professional/staff of the health facility, as the mention of non-health professional staff refers to non-health professionals/staff of the health facility who provide the health services.”

“Clearly, respondent caused undue injury to the government for the amount of P17,512.50 he received as honoraria despite not being entitled thereto,” added the Ombudsman.

Under Section 3(e) of Republic Act No. 3019, public officials are prohibited from causing any undue injury to any party, including the Government, or giving any private party any unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference in the discharge of his official administrative or judicial functions through manifest partiality, evident bad faith or gross inexcusable negligence.

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