MANILA – Former Philippine Charity Sweepstakes Office (PCSO) general manager Alexander Balutan resigned and was not fired by President Rodrigo Duterte, Malacañang clarified yesterday.
Presidential Spokesperson Salvador Panelo said Balutan filed a resignation letter with the Office of the President.
“Mr. Balutan resigned out of delicadeza because of, as we have said, serious allegations of corruption in the PCSO. He requested the President for a fair and impartial investigation to ferret out the truth,” added Panelo.
Panelo previously said Duterte fired Balutan for corruption and that this should “serve as a stern warning, especially when it comes to serving the Filipino people with integrity and loyalty.”
Balutan, who was appointed by Duterte in 2016, was accused by PCSO board member Sandra Cam of throwing a “lavish” Christmas party in 2017. But he claimed only P6 million was spent in the party, instead of the proposed P14-million budget.
A former Marine officer, Balutan came to prominence after he testified in a Senate hearing in 2005 on how allies of then president and now House Speaker Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo allegedly rigged results in Lanao del Sur to her favor during the 2004 presidential election.
On Saturday Balutan took to social media to explain his leaving the agency.
“Career for me is just temporary but character is (for a) lifetime, even beyond grave,” he posted on Facebok.
When he assumed office in 2016, according to Balutan, he right away told PCSO employees he would resign from office if somebody from Congress asks him to do something he could not stomach.
“I did not ask for this position, PRRD (President Rodrigo R. Duterte) retired me early from (the) Marines to help him run his administration,” stressed Balutan on Facebook.
He insisted that he did his job well.
“In silence, I did and I excelled. I did not ask anything from the President in return,” stressed Balutan./PN