President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed on October 4 Executive Order (EO) No. 43 creating the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC) to investigate graft and corruption against all presidential appointees in the Executive Branch.
Created under the Office of the President, the PACC will be composed of a Chairman and four Commissioners to be appointed by the President, the majority of whom must be Philippine Bar members and have been practicing law for at least five (5) years.
The PACC will also have a Secretariat, to be headed by an Executive Director, who will provide technical and administrative support to the Commission. The personnel of the Secretariat will be appointed by the PACC Chairman.
Further, the Commission may establish their operating units as may be necessary for the performance of its functions and implementation of this EO.
EO No. 43, likewise, outlined the PACC’s powers and functions.
The PACC has the power to hear and investigate administrative cases against all presidential appointees in the Executive Branch for acts or omissions constituting violations of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act or Republic Act (RA) No. 3019; RA No. 1379 on the unlawful acquisition of property by a public officer or employee; the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees (RA No. 6713); provisions under Title 7, Book 2 of the Revised Penal Code involving crimes committed by public officers; EO No. 292 pertaining to the Administrative Code of 1987; and any rules and regulations duly enforced by competent authorities.
The PACC may also conduct lifestyle checks and fact-finding inquiries of all presidential appointees, including those outside the Executive Branch, and submit its reports and recommendations to the President.
Further, the Commission may investigate presidential appointees in the police and military upon instructions of the President.
“The resignation or retirement of the public officer under investigation shall not divest the Commission of jurisdiction to continue the investigation or hearing thereof,” the EO stated.
In the exercise of its functions, the PACC may engage the help of any law enforcement agency, call upon all government agencies for assistance and cooperation, or employ the services of qualified consultants from the public and private sectors.
Other functions of the PACC include the ability to recommend to the President the issuance of a preventive suspension order, power to administer oaths and issue subpoenas, and endorse vital witnesses into the Witness Protection Program.
“Whenever the Commission deems it warranted and necessary, it may refer any case for appropriate action to the Office of the Ombudsman, or deputize any other office, committee, commission, bureau, agency, department, or instrumentality, including government-owned or -controlled corporations, to conduct a fact-finding investigation,” EO No. 43 said.
Meanwhile, the investigative and recommendatory functions of the defunct Presidential Anti-Graft Commission (PAGC), which were assumed by the Office of the Deputy Executive Secretary for Legal Affairs (ODESLA), will be transferred to the PACC once the members of the Commission and its Secretariat have been duly appointed. ### (PCOO Content)