PIA chief hits Martin Andanar over corruption probe
Christina Mendez (The Philippine Star) - June 12, 2019 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Philippine Information Agency (PIA) chief Harold Clavite decried yesterday the ongoing investigation of corruption allegations against him.

In a statement sent to the Malacañang Press Corps, he said Presidential Communications Operations Office Secretary Martin Andanar and his lawyer established “probable cause on their own, based on an anonymous letter, without (waiting) for an official response from my side.”

Andanar said on Monday that the investigation was not supposed to be made public.

Yesterday, Andanar refused to comment on the matter, saying the investigation is now being handled by PCOO Undersecretary for Legal Affairs Marvin Gatpayat.

“We are waiting for his reply to our letter. We gave him until June 13 to submit his reply,” Gatpayat told The STAR.

Gatpayat said the PCOO is giving Clavite “an opportunity for the PIA head to be heard.”

Clavite argued that establishment of prima facie is determined through a formal investigation as convened by the disciplining authority, which they have not done yet.

Clavite wondered why Andanar acted on an anonymous letter when the PCOO has yet to act on a complaint he sent last month over alleged irregularities in the PIA.

 He said people affected by his reforms in the agency are behind the efforts to discredit him.

 “There should be no room for any biases and PCOO should be more objective in dealing with such considering my excellent performance in the past two years,” he said.

According to the PIA website, Clavite worked in the United Nations headquarters in New York as information management staff and as executive associate in the UN Development Operations Coordination.

He returned to the Philippines in 2016 to work for the Duterte administration.  

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