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Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Ombudsman lifts suspension of 72 NFA warehouse heads

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THE Office of the Ombudsman has lifted the preventive suspension of 72 personnel of the National Food Authority implicated in the irregular sale of rice buffer stock to private traders.

In lifting the order, the Ombudsman cited it imposed the preventive suspensions to prevent the respondents from influencing the  investigation and to preserve pieces of evidence that could be under their  control and custody.

The documents under the warehouse supervisors’ control were already with the Ombudsman.

“Moreover, there is insufficient ground to believe that their continued stay in office may prejudice the investigation of the case filed against them,” the Ombudsman’s resolution read.

“Thus, the continued preventive suspension of the afore-named warehouse supervisors is no longer necessary,” it said.

The 72 warehouse supervisors were among 139 NFA officials and employees placed under a six-month preventive suspension on March 1.

The suspension arose from administrative charges of grave misconduct, gross neglect of duty and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service in connection with the sale of NFA rice to traders at a low price and without public bidding or authorization from the NFA Council.

The supervisors were assigned to warehouses in Central Luzon, Calabarzon, Mimaropa, Western Visayas, Central Visayas, Zamboanga Peninsula, Northern Mindanao, Soccskargen, Caraga, and the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao.

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