SBMA exec accused of designating personnel illegally
MANILA — An anti-corruption group has filed an administrative complaint against a high-ranking Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority official for performing duties outside his function as an officer-in-charge administrator in 2016.
Citizens Crime Watch executives Carlo Batalla and Diego Magpantay accused deputy administrator for legal affairs Randy Escolango of malfeasance, gross or grave misconduct, and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service.
Their 11-page complaint before the Office of the Ombudsman stated that Escolango issued 13 office orders on personnel designation and five memoranda on office policies from October to December last year. He also allegedly executed unspecified contracts and agreements on behalf of SBMA.
This was despite the fact that he was only designated by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea as an OIC.
According to the complainants, an OIC enjoys limited powers confined to ensuring that the office continues its usual activities and the power to appoint is not deemed delegated to a mere OIC.
“Here, respondent neither had the legal right nor the authority to issue the subject office orders,” the complaint read. “The OIC has no power to appoint unless the designation issued by the proper appointing authority includes expressly the power to issue appointment.”
Escolango allegedly committed malfeasance by “maliciously acting” as a duly appointed administrator, the complainants said. He was accused of grave misconduct for disregarding the established rules, as well as conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service for tarnishing the integrity of the office.
In an interview with reporters, Magpantay said they would soon file a separate criminal complaint against Escolango for usurpation of official functions before the local prosecutor. SFM
PHOTO CAPTION: Citizens Crime Watch executives Carlo Batalla (in white) and Diego Magpantay (in green) file administrative complaint at the Office of the Ombudsman against Subic Bay Metropolitan Authority deputy administrator Randy Escolango. Photos: Vince F. Nonato.
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