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Case vs ex-PMA heads dismissed

MANILA, Philippines — The Professional Regulation Commission (PRC) has dismissed an administrative case against five former presidents of the Philippine Medical Association for fraud in the registration of the Philippine Society for Stem Cell Medicine (PSSCM) in the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).

In a two-page order, the PRC Board of Medicine decided to dismiss the case against doctors Leo Olarte, Bu Castro, Rey Melchor, Oscar Tinio and Jose Asa Sabili after the complainants submitted an affidavit of desistance saying they realized that the five “have not directly participated in the processing and procurement of the SEC registration of the PSSCM.”  

The complainants – doctors Miguel Noche Jr., Edgardo Fernando, Restituto de Ocampo, Jose Cueto Jr. and Mildred Pareja – added in the affidavit that their decision to permanently withdraw their charge comes after the PRC and SEC investigation failed to “ascertain who the persons responsible for processing of the SEC registration were.”

“In fairness to the respondents, we are permanently withdrawing the case against them and clear them of any liability,” the affidavit also read.

The Board of Medicine order was dated March 15, 2017 and signed by chairman Clarita Maano and members Eleanor Almoro, Maria Graciela Gonzaga and Eleonor Galvez. Members Noche and Fernando inhibited themselves as they are among the complainants.

In the charge, the PMA officials were accused of committing “unprofessional and/or unethical conduct” when they applied for the registration of PSSCM with SEC after an alleged endorsement of former PRC Teresita Manzala in February 2013.  

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Manzala complained that her signature in the endorsement was forged.  

The five PMA officials were then incorporators of the PSSCM which was formed to pioneer stem cell practice in the country.  

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