Published: Fri, August 23, 2013
By Kristine de Guzman
Labor Secretary Rosalinda Baldoz has approved the recommendation of a fact-finding team to file administrative charges against three labor officials accused of seeking sexual favors from overseas Filipino workers looking for a ticket back home.
Nicon Fameronag, director of communication of the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE), made the announcement in a press conference on Friday.
According to him, Labor Attache Adam Musa will be charged with gross negligence, OIC Labor Attache Mario Antonio with grave misconduct, and Assistant Labor Attache Antonio Villafuerte with simple negligence.
Sexual harassment complaints against Villafuerte will also be referred to the DOLE Committee on Decorum and Investigation (CODI).
The committee, he said, is tasked with the investigation of sexual harassment complaints under the Anti-Sexual Harassment Act of 1995 and the Civil Service Commission Resolution No. 01-0943, Series of 2001.
The committee has five days to finish a preliminary investigation and, if warranted, to charge Villafuerte.
After filing charges, the committee has 15 days to submit its report and recommendation.
Baldoz also signed the endorsement of the charges against Musa and Antonio to the two special hearing panels formed to preside over the formal investigation.
One of the victims of the sex-for-flight scam, known only as Analiza, a welcomed the DOLE decision.
Early in August, the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee began its own investigation into complaints against the labor attaches.
Labor executives in question and their alleged victims came face-to-face at the hearing.
The Labor Department says all statements and documents gathered by the fact-finding team had been sent to the Department of Justice.