FORMER Philippine Health Insurance Corp. (PhilHealth) interim head Celestina Ma. Jude de la Serna and former Health Secretary Paulyn Ubial are facing complaints before the Office of the Ombudsman over de la Serna’s claims for travel and hotel expenses totaling P268,169.60.
In three separate complaints filed on June 5 before the Office of the Ombudsman in Cagayan de Oro, the two were accused of violation of Section 3, subsection (a) and (e) of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act; malversation of public funds; and falsification of public documents.
The complainants were Datu Masiding Alonto Jr., Jelbert Galicto, Anshari Mangondato, Ziur Ruiz, Ian Alfredo Magno, Maria Rhodella Monsanto, and Marlon Niño Arrabaca.
“Last March, 2018, however, notwithstanding the GCG [or Governance Commission on Government-owned and Controlled Corporations]Memorandum and E.O. [or Executive Order]248 defining her permanent official station, Dr. De la Serna filed the following Disbursement Vouchers for reimbursement of her travels from Bohol to Manila and back (with Bohol allegedly as her permanent official station), and of her accommodations in Metro Manila…,” the complainants alleged.
According to the complainants, de la Serna’s official station was Metro Manila.
The first complaint involved Disbursement Voucher (D.V.) 18-03-188 and the amount P119,348.72, second complaint involved D.V. 18-03-187 and P83,323, and the third complaint involved D.V. 18-03-186 and the amount P65,497.88.
The complainants alleged in part that “by using and misrepresenting in the Disbursement Voucher, Itinerary of Travel, Certificate of Travel Completed, and After Travel Report that she was on a travel status while in Metro Manila in order to claim for travel and hotel expenses when in fact she was not on travel status because her permanent official station is Metro Manila, Dr. De la Serna made untruthful statements in a narration of facts which she has the legal duty to disclose and state truthfully and which, if disclosed and stated truthfully she would not have been paid travel and hotel expenses.”
According to the complaint, Ubial allegedly signed and approved the supposedly falsified documents of de la Serna.
“By using a false certification wherein it has been claimed and certified that she was on a travel status while in Metro Manila in order to claim for travel and hotel expenses when in fact she was not on a travel status because her permanent official station is Metro Manila, Dr. De la Serna committed the crime of Using False Certificates under Article 175 of the Revised Penal Code,” the complainants also alleged.
“By issuing and executing false certification wherein it was been certified by Sec. Paulyn Ubial that the amount…was incurred during her travel to Manila…were official in nature and necessary in the performance as Interim/OIC President & CEO, when the fact is that Dr. De la Serna’s stay in Manila is not considered a travel under the law, and that the amount incurred was neither official nor necessary,” they alleged.
President Rodrigo Duterte removed de la Serna as interim chief on Monday. Malacañang said on Tuesday, however, that she remained a member of the board of directors. REINA TOLENTINO
The post Former PhilHealth interim head, Health chief face complaint over travel, hotel expenses appeared first on The Manila Times Online.