In a statement released yesterday, the SC said its Third Division issued a 10-page decision last July 15 on the petition for review on certiorari filed by former PCGG chairman Camilo Sabio, who invoked such immunity from suit while he was in office.
File
SC affirms ex-PCGG chief’s conviction for graft
Evelyn Macairan (The Philippine Star) - September 12, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — The Supreme Court’s Third Division yesterday affirmed the decision of the Sandiganbayan, convicting former Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) chairman Camilo Sabio of violating Republic Act 3019, or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

In a statement released yesterday, the SC said its Third Division issued a 10-page decision last July 15 on the petition for review on certiorari filed by Sabio, who invoked such immunity from suit while he was in office.

The SC affirmed the decision of the Sandiganbayan convicting Sabio for violating provisions of RA 3019.

The Sandiganbayan had found Sabio guilty for the lease of 11 motor vehicles entered into by the PCGG with the United Coconut Planters Bank (UCPB) Leasing and Finance Corp. in 2007-2009, without the required competitive public bidding.

The SC mentioned that RA 9184, or the Government Procurement Reform Act, explicitly provides that all government procurement shall be done through competitive bidding, except as provided for in Article 16 of the same law.

The SC also said presidential appointees are not immune from suit.

The high court’s Third Division, through Associate Justice Diosdado Peralta, said that, “Sabio cannot claim immunity from suit for being an alter ego of the President. It was the PCGG, through Sabio and his commissioners, not the President, who entered into the subject lease agreements without the requisite public bidding.”

“It will be ridiculous to hold that alter egos of the President are, likewise, immune from suit simply because their acts are considered acts of the President if not repudiated. In fact, the 1987 Constitution is replete with provisions on the constitutional principles of accountability and good governance that should guide a public servant. The rule is that unlawful acts of public officials are not acts of the State, and the officer who acts illegally is not acting as such but stands in the same footing as any other trespasser,” it added.

The SC also said there was bad faith on Sabio’s part in entering into the lease agreements. It took note of the fact that he was also a member of the board of UCPB, parent company of UCPB Leasing, when the agreements were entered into, thus giving unwarranted benefit and advantage in favor of UCPB Leasing.

“As correctly ruled by the Sandiganbayan, Sabio’s acts unmistakably reflect ‘a dishonest purpose or some moral obliquity and conscious doing of a wrong; a breach of sworn duty through some motive or intent or ill will,’” the SC said.

CAMILO SABIO GRAFT AND CORRUPTION PRESIDENTIAL COMMISSION ON GOOD GOVERNMENT
Philstar
  • Latest
  • Trending
Latest
Are you sure you want to log out?
X
Login

Philstar.com is one of the most vibrant, opinionated, discerning communities of readers on cyberspace. With your meaningful insights, help shape the stories that can shape the country. Sign up now!

SIGN IN
or sign in with