PCSO officials asked to ‘voluntarily leave’ posts amid corruption probe

Marje Pelayo   •   August 1, 2019   •   943

MANILA, Philippines – Recoboda Party-list Rep. Godofredo Guya on Thursday (August 1) asked officials of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) to file a voluntary leave of absence while the investigation on the alleged corruption within the agency rolls on.

 “We should ask them that they should voluntary…mag-leave muna sila (to take a leave for now),” Guya said.

“Kung ayaw nilang umalis, nakakahiya sa taumbayan, (If they refuse to leave, it would be unethical),” he added.

Guya’s call was to ensure that those involved wouldn’t have the chance to influence the result of the investigation.

The lawmaker also supports the publication of the names involved in the controversy.

Meanwhile, the House of Representatives (HOR) wants an immediate start of the probe.

The House Committee on Games and Amusement is planning to call the former and the current officials of the state-run gaming service to hear their explanation on the matter.

“Magkakaroon po kami ng pagpupulong para nga talaga bilisan agad ang pagpapatawag ng congressional inquiry para magkaroon ng imbestigasyon ang kongreso sa massive corruption sa PCSO, (We will set up a meeting to discuss how to expedite the congressional inquiry on the massive corruption in PCSO),” said Committee member ACT-CIS party-list Rep. Niña Taduran.

So far, the Lower House has received two resolutions seeking an investigation on the alleged irregularities inside the PCSO.

The PCSO, for its part, assured to cooperate with the probe. – (MNP with details from Grace Casin)

PCSO official shot dead in Mandaluyong

Aileen Cerrudo   •   July 30, 2020

A board member of the Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) has been gunned down in Mandaluyong City on Thursday afternoon (July 30).

Reports say PCSO Board Secretary Wesley Barayuga was gunned down by an armed man on a motorcycle at the corner of Calbayog and Malinaw Streets in Mandaluyong City. His driver was also shot and is currently being treated at a hospital.

CCTV footage showed the suspect shooting from the passenger side. Authorities are currently conducting an investigation. AAC (with reports from Lea Ylagan)

Pacquiao advises Faeldon to take leave as BuCor chief

Aileen Cerrudo   •   September 4, 2019

Senator Manny Pacquiao (left) and BuCor Chief Nicanor Faeldon (right)

Senator Manny Pacquiao has advised Bureau of Corrections (BuCor) Chief Nicanor Faeldon to take a leave-of-absence while facing investigation.

In a statement, Pacquiao said he believes in the integrity and honesty of Faeldon but the investigation on the alleged abuse of the Republic Act 10592 or the good conduct time allowance (GCTA) law needs Faeldon’s “full and undivided attention.”

“I know that Undersecretary Faeldon is a good man and has served his country well but I really think that he can spare the president and this administration from embarrassment by taking a leave-of-absence,” he said.

READ: Faeldon admits signing ‘memorandum’ not release order for Antonio Sanchez

The Senate Blue Ribbon committee will continue the investigation on Thursday (September 5) on the said issue.

Meanwhile, Malacañang said Faeldon’s fate lies in President Rodrigo Duterte’s hands.

“That’s for the president to decide. I talked with him yesterday, and that’s what he told me: ‘There is an ongoing investigation and I’ll wait for the investigation,’” said Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo.

Faeldon had previously said he will not resign as BuCor chief amid the controversy.—AAC (with reports from Grace Casin)

Cam recommends transfer of STL operations to Pagcor

Maris Federez   •   August 26, 2019

PCSO board member Sandra Cam

Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) board member Sandra Cam believes that corruption in the Small Town Lottery (STL) in the country has not stopped despite President Rodrigo Duterte’s order to lift the suspension of its operation under certain conditions.

“It’s just like a legalized jueteng,” Cam said.  

This prompted the official to recommend the transfer of the operation of STL to the Philippine Amusement and Gaming Corporation (Pagcor).

She added that it is still safe to just have the lotto operation remain under the PCSO to help rid the agency of corruption.

 “Ibigay na lang sa PAGCOR because gambling naman talaga ang PAGCOR and STL is a gambling [Give the STL to Pagcor because it is really gambling],” Cam added.

Cam also said that she is ready to name the high-ranking officials who are also members of the PCSO board of directors who are involved in corruption in the agency on Tuesday’s scheduled Congressional hearing.

Cam insists that some former officials of the PCSO were also involved in the corruption in the STL operation.

She added that several generals were given permits to operate STL even if they did not pay cash bonds to PCSO.

“I’m not against the military. I’m not against the PNP. I have a lot of friends there. But I don’t like the way the mistahs of General Corpuz and General Balutan na parang ginawa nila, ang PCSO is a private company [who seemed to have made PCSO a private company],” Cam said.

Meanwhile, Cam said that she is also ready to undergo the lifestyle check that the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) will conduct to all PCSO board members brought about by the corruption allegations.

“Ang masasabi ko doon sa mga critics ko [All I can say to my critics is] that I have a 500 million (worth) resort, you can go — I will invite you for free. You check out my place, it’s just a kubo [nipa hut]. Ang aming mga houses doon, cottages are made of kubo [Our houses, cottages there are made of nipa hut],” she added.

Cam further said that she is willing to resign if the corruption issues inside the PCSO will not be resolved within three to four months. (from the report of Harlene Delgado) /mbmf

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