Gatchalian sues ex-Energy chief Cusi for cyberlibel over Malampaya deal

Jauhn Etienne Villaruel, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jul 14 2022 07:19 PM | Updated as of Jul 15 2022 10:19 AM

Gatchalian sues ex-Energy chief Cusi for cyberlibel over Malampaya deal

MANILA — Sen. Sherwin Gatchalian on Thursday said he has filed a cyberlibel complaint against former Department of Energy (DOE) Secretary Alfonso Cusi over a statement published in February regarding the controversial Malampaya deal.

Gatchalian, in a press statement, said he filed the complaint before the Valenzuela City Prosecutor’s Office.

The senator cited Cusi's "defamatory" statement issued last Feb. 4 "that casts malice on the reputation and integrity of the senator and the Senate Committee on Energy’s investigation... surrounding the transfer of the 45 percent participating interest of Chevron Philippines in the Malampaya gas project."

"A simple reading of Cusi’s statement shows that he characterizes the conduct of the Senate investigation as being tainted with bad faith for being highly irregular and politicized,” Gatchalian said.

During the 18th Congress, Gatchalian led a Senate panel that found the sale of Chevron’s stake in the Malampaya project to Udenna Corp. owned by billionaire Dennis Uy "railroaded."

Cusi and Uy have denied the Malampaya deal was a “midnight deal," insisting the transaction was above board. 

Cusi has yet to issue a statement regarding Gatchalian's lawsuit, as of posting.