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CA upholds simple misconduct verdict for Butch Abad over DAP mess

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The Court of Appeals (CA) has remained firm in its ruling which found former budget secretary Florencio Abad liable for simple misconduct over the implementation of the outlawed Disbursement Acceleration Program (DAP).

The CA issued a November 25 resolution turned down the motion for reconsideration of Abad who sought to overturn the CA’s February 27 decision against him.

“After a review of the grounds relied upon by the petitioner, This Court finds no compelling reason to amend Our Decision as the issues raised have already been resolved and recovered extensively in the assailed resolution,” read the CA’s November 25 resolution.

The appelate court pointed out “Abad may not successfully evade liability by invoking good faith.”

“While Abad’s desire to fast track public spending and push economic growth is laudable and the implementation of the DAP, in fact, undeniably yielded positive results that enhanced the economic welfare of the country, his defenses cannot override the clear mandate of the law,” it pointed out.

“As responsible public officer, Abad ought to have been well aware that he has no authority to overrule the requirements of established rules and the fundamental law of the land,” it added.

The CA’s February 27 decision upheld the Office of the Ombudsman’s ruling which found Abad liable with simple misconduct over the implementation of the DAP and fined him equivalent to three months of his salary.

The Ombudsman ruled that Abad intruded to the powers of Congress when he issued National Budget Circular No. 541 which consolidated savings or unutilized balances and withdraw unobligated balances of agencies with low levels of obligations.

Back in 2014, the Supreme Court has issued a ruling which declared DAP as unconstitutional.

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