MANILA, May 18 (Mabuhay) — The Supreme Court (SC) has upheld the dismissal from government service of a former accountant of the National Statistics Office-Bicol (NSO-5) for grave misconduct related to a bidding process.

In a notice of resolution uploaded on May 6, the SC Second Division turned down the appeal filed by Milagros Longasa, questioning the decision of the Civil Service Commission (CSC) and the Court of Appeals (CA) to dismiss her.

Longasa, who was the head of the agency’s Bids and Awards Committee at the time, facilitated all transactions related to the transfer of an NSO regional office in July 2007 as the old office was often flooded, destroying files and other records.

The CSC found Longasa liable for her appropriation of 25 square meters to her canteen business, a portion of the 300-square-meter property leased by NSO-Legazpi City.

The materials used to put up Longasa’s canteen were also included in the procurement of NSO.

In 2008, a letter complaint reached the Commission on Audit (COA), prompting an investigation that led to the CSC decision dated Dec. 30, 2010, finding Longasa liable for grave misconduct and ordering her dismissal from the service.

The COA probe discovered she disposed of NSO’s unserviceable properties without public bidding.

In turning down her appeal, the SC stressed the power to discipline government officials and employees is vested by the Constitution in the CSC.

“It is a basic doctrine that the findings of fact of quasi-judicial agencies, like the CSC, in the assessment of the pieces of evidence presented before them, are accorded great weight, more especially when sustained by the CA,” the court said. (MNS)

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