Manila –The Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) is now stronger with President Rodrigo R. Duterte giving the body expanded powers to investigate his appointees involved in corruption and anomalies.
In Executive Order (EO) No. 73. signed by Duterte on Dec. 28 and released to the media on Friday, he expanded the PACC’s jurisdiction by having the power to recommend to the Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) and to the President himself the filing of charges against officials tagged in corruption for further investigation.
“Nothing shall prevent the President, in the interest of the service, from directly investigating and/or hearing an administrative case against any presidential appointee or authorizing other offices under the Office of the President to do the same,” the EO reads.
The EO will also allow Duterte to assume jurisdiction over any case being investigated by the PACC.
ARTA Deputy Director-General Ernesto V. Perez welcomed the issuance of the EO.
“EO 73 further strengthens ARTA’s collaboration and partnership with PACC in the drive against corruption,” Perez said in a message to the Philippine News Agency (PNA) on Saturday.
Perez cited the gains of the issuance of the EO in the Duterte administration’s drive to curb corruption and improve the delivery of services in the country.
“This (EO 73) will give ARTA more capabilities and opportunities to comply with its mandate to ensure the ease of doing business and help the people get better and more efficient government services and to investigate and recommend the filing of administrative and/or criminal charges in case of violations,” he said.
Duterte, in his speeches, has always warned government officials not to get involved in corruption and anomalies in government.
Combatting corruption is one of the major campaign promises of Duterte when he ran for the presidency in 2016. (PNA)