SPEAKER Lord Allan Velasco on Tuesday strongly backed the directive of President Rodrigo “Rody” Duterte for the Department of Justice (DoJ) to launch a government-wide corruption probe.
“The House of Representatives fully supports President Rodrigo Duterte’s directive for the conduct of a large-scale investigation into allegations of corruption in the entire government,” Velasco said.
Velasco urged the public to back the Chief Executive’s order for the DoJ to probe allegations of corruption in the entire government.
“We fully understand that the President is doing this out of his frustration over chronic corruption in government, and the House leadership is one with him in his desire to rid the bureaucracy of corrupt officials and employees in the remainder of his term,” Velasco pointed out.
“It is also important to note that the President issued the directive following incessant attacks against the House due to alleged involvement of some of its members in corruption activities in the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH),” Velasco stressed. “While we are saddened that some congressmen and the institution have been dragged into this controversy, we welcome such probe by any government agency, as an investigation by the House would be self-serving and would only create a cloud of doubt.”
Construction Workers Solidarity (CWS) party-list Rep. Romeo S. Momo, Sr., senior vice-chairman of the House committee on public works and highways, said his group “still believe in the dedication and professionalism of DPWH officials and employees, and on presumption of regularity in the performance of their respective functions. It may be true, though, that there are some ‘bad eggs in the basket’, tainting the whole institution.”
“That is precisely why the good DPWH Secretary, Mark Villar, created a Task Force, headed by ASec. Mel John I. Verzosa, to investigate the alleged corruption and other illegal acts of these officials and employees. We laud Sec. Villar for swiftly acting on the issue and calls on the Task Force to expedite their action so that those scrupulous DPWH people will be held answerable for their acts,” Momo stressed.
“As to the conduct of congressional inquiry in aid of legislation, it may be wise to await for the result of the DPWH Task Force investigation to avoid duplicity of functions and considering further that the Task Force holds the technical expertise on the matter. When the proper time comes, this Representation shall fully support a congressional inquiry not only to bring light on the issue but more importantly, to serve as guide in crafting necessary law/s addressing the alleged corruption in the DPWH bidding and project implementation processes. It is in this light that we join the President, Rodrigo Roa Duterte, in his call to cleanse our ranks against corrupt government workers,” said Momo.