Immigration chief faces graft raps

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01:27 AM January 28th, 2013

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By: Cynthia D. Balana, January 28th, 2013 01:27 AM

Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David Jr. INQUIRER FILE PHOTO

The Ombudsman has charged Immigration Commissioner Ricardo David with graft for replacing the chief of the agency’s intelligence division despite orders from the Civil Service Commission (CSC) and the Department of Justice to reinstate the latter.

The charge was based on a complaint filed by lawyer Faizal Hussin, who accused David of violating the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act by failing to reinstate him.

The person who replaced Hussin, lawyer Antonette Bucasas-Mangrobang, was also slapped charges of grave misconduct and usurpation of public functions under the Penal Code. Both charges carry imprisonment and disqualification from holding public office.

The CSC, in its order dated Oct. 25, 2012, affirmed its earlier decision and ordered Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to reinstate Hussin to his original position as chief of the intelligence division of the Bureau of Immigration. Pursuant to the CSC ruling, De Lima had issued a memorandum to the BI dated March 22, 2012, directing David to “immediately implement the said CSC resolution and the department order.”

“Instead of complying with the CSC resolution and the memorandum of Secretary De Lima, Commissioner David, displaying an arrogance rarely seen in public service, issued a memorandum to all the BI personnel clearly stating that Attorney Mangrobang shall continue to be the intelligence chief,” the complaint said.

David assigned Hussin to the Commissioner’s Office and ordered him to seek the prior concurrence of Mangrobang for resources and assistance in the job.

Hussin said David’s act was in stern defiance of the CSC and the justice department’s order.

“If David is allowed to defy orders of the Civil Service Commission and secretary of justice, his immediate superior, nothing will come out of the daang matuwid (straight path) of the President, and others will follow suit,” Hussin said.

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