The Office of the Ombudsman found a town mayor of Matagob in the Central Philippines guilty of simple misconduct for using a government vehicle to go to a nearby hospital. The Office of the Ombudsman is an independent government commission mandated to file cases against erring government officials allegedly involved in administrative and criminal offenses.
The erstwhile mayor was identified as Agustin Pedrano Sr. who was also accompanied by his driver, administrative aide Ramelito Parac. Both Pedrano and Ramelito were supposed to face suspension for one month and one day but since they are already separated from the service both former government workers will have to pay a fine equal to their one month earned salary and a day.
The Ombudsman claimed that Pedrano used a government vehicle (Nissan Urvan) without the supporting documents last August 23, 2013. The Philippine government has launched a campaign in 2013 to apprehend government workers including elected officials such as mayors and governors who are using government vehicles for personal use.
In his counter affidavit, Pedrano countered that he used the government vehicle because it was the fastest mode of transportation when he needed to go the hospital to have his respiratory disease treated.
The former mayor said he did not have the trip ticket (document needed when using a travelling vehicle) because the situation was in an emergency situation. The mayor was also accompanied by his wife and children in the government vehicle.
But the Ombudsman found no evidence in the former mayor's counter affidavit that he was facing respiratory problems.