Ex-state university dean convicted for tapping own review center
MANILA, Philippines — The former Dean of the College of Allied Medicine (COAM) of the Southern Luzon State University (SLSU) has been convicted by the Sandiganbayan of two counts of graft after endorsing and tapping her own tutorial center to provide review classes for nursing students.
In a decision promulgated last January 25, Dean Susana Salvacion was found to have violated Section 3(e) of R.A. 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act when she allowed Nurmed Hyperlearn Review and Tutorial Services to conduct review classes inside the school auditorium in Lucban, Quezon province.
Testimonies from various witnesses said that the lectures went on for 21 days in 2012 — without Nurmed and SLSU entering into any form of contract or agreement.
Another complaint lodged against Salvacion claimed that she promoted the said review center to COAM students who were taking the nursing licensure exam.
According to the decision penned by Seventh Division Associate Justice Georgina Hidalgo and concurred by Associate Justices Ma. Theresa Dolores Gomez-Estoesta and Zaldy Trespeses, Salvacion’s position as Dean played a part in using the school’s auditorium for the benefit of her own review center.
“In this case, sensibility or ‘delicadeza’ should have guided accused Salvacion not to allow the use of the state university’s auditorium as a venue for the review classes of Nurmed, which undeniably belongs to her,” Hidalgo said.
“Whether she admits or not, her position as Dean of the COAM of SLSU made it easier for her to utilize the facilities of the school,” she added.
Hidalgo also noted that Salvacion’s claim that she acted in good faith was contrary to her decision to skip significant steps in requesting for the use of the school’s — or the government’s — facilities.
“That while she meant well when she said that ‘she just wanted to help the students pass the examination’ that is why she established Nurmed, her words alone cannot be taken as an expression of good faith, because in the first place, her action of not going through the proper procedure for the rental of the auditorium is suspect,” she explained.
“Again, while it may be true that she made a letter request for the use of the auditorium, the making of a letter-request is not all […] To be specific and as an expression of good faith, an approval letter should have been presented, or better still a Memorandum of Agreement (MOA) or a Lease Contract,” she added.
With the judgment, Salvacion will serve a sentence of six years and one month up to eight years for each count. She was also perpetually disqualified from holding public office. /gsg
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