Palace consolidates complaints vs Ducut

by RG Cruz, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 06 2014 11:26 PM | Updated as of Jun 07 2014 07:26 AM

MANILA - The Office of the President (OP) has consolidated the 2 complaints calling for the ouster of Energy Regulatory Commission (ERC) chair Zenaida Ducut.

Deputy Presidential spokesperson Abigail Valte on Friday said the Palace has received Ducut's response to the 2nd complaint.

"Nagtanong ako doon sa legal ng ating OP [Office of the President]. I am told that she has already filed her comment to the second complaint, to the second petition. In the normal course of things, the petitioner or the complainant will be allowed to respond to the allegations in the comment. So under review pa rin ‘yung complaint against her," she said.

Valte did not give a timetable for a decision to be given.

"Normally, administrative processes are a little more flexible in such that both parties are allowed to file motions for extension of time. But according to the Office of the President, the cases were consolidated already, so they will be heard jointly," she said. "Nire-review na sila ngayon. Binigyan na daw ng time pero mukhang hindi na yata nag-file so ngayon, nire-review na."

Ducut has been linked to the multibillion-peso pork barrel scam allegedly led by Janet Lim Napoles.

Ducut, a former Pampanga lawmaker, allegedly benefited from the kickbacks from the scam, which involved the siphoning of pork barrel funds to Napoles' bogus foundations.

Calls for her ouster snowballed after her agency approved last year’s increases in power rates.

The increases have been indefinitely suspended by the Supreme Court.