Senator Risa Hontiveros on Tuesday welcomed Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra’s appointment as head of the Duterte administration’s anti-corruption task force that will probe corruption in various government agencies.
“I would like to express my full support for Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra as he leads a task force that will investigate corruption in various government agencies. I firmly believe he is up to the task,” Hontiveros said.
Hontiveros said the Department of Justice (DOJ) secretary has been actively supporting the Senate Committee on Women, Children, Family Relations and Gender Equality, which she chairs, in its pursuit for truth and transparency especially on the bribery scandal hounding the Bureau of Immigration (BI).
“As the Senate hearings have shown, we need a collaborative effort to put a stop to the anomalous practices that tend to weaken our country’s institutions,” she said.
“For his part, Sec. Guevarra and his office have been very cooperative in our probe on the illegal practices at the BI as regards the notorious ‘pastillas’ scheme,” she stressed.
“As an independent body, our committee at the Senate will continue to investigate the illicit activities at our country’s arrival and departure gates, which have eventually led to the abuse of women and children,” she added.
President Duterte earlier announced he has assigned Guevarra to lead a task force against corruption in the “entire government” which will exist alongside the Presidential Anti-Corruption Commission (PACC).
As a member of the opposition, Hontiveros said she is certain that the DOJ chief would be able to join their efforts in fighting corruption in government.
“Still, I am reassured that we have an ally in Secretary Guevarra as he takes on this additional role in our relentless fight against corruption,” the lawmaker said.