SCIENCE CITY OF MUÑOZ — A group of incumbent and former officials, including a former president, of the state-run Central Luzon State University sought on Wednesday an investigation and immediate suspension of its top official over alleged corruption and nepotism.
Former CLSU president Eliseo Ruiz said incumbent president Dr. Edgar Orden allegedly appointed his wife Dr. Maria Excelcis Orden as vice president for research, extension and training; his sister Janet Orden Saturno as director of the gender and development office; and brother-in-law Camilo Saturno as project manager of the 10-hectare tilapia production project.
This, Ruiz said, violates the rule on nepotism under Administrative Code of 1987 which prohibits appointments in favor of relatives within the third degree of consanguinity and affinity of the appointing authority.
Saturno, Ruiz furthered, owns a “huge tilapia farm” thus appointing him to the university tilapia projects may constitute conflict of interest.
Ruiz who served as CLSU president from 1987 to 1990 joined the concerned faculty, staff, and concerned citizens in seeking Orden’s suspension. They wrote a letter that contains several allegations to President Duterte on Monday, Oct. 26.
Ruiz said Orden disregarded the standard practice of evaluation, selection and promotion that should pass through a special committee as prescribed by the Civil Service Rules and Regulations allegedly by making or approving appointments to plantilla positions “as if this is totally his prerogative.”
“Ang faculty and staff, ang mga empleyado ng ating CLSU ay disgruntled,” Ruiz said. “Yung iba ay nagpa-file na ng early retirement dahil hindi na nila masikmura ang ginagawang insulto, pinapahiya sila sa harapan ng mga tao.”
In their letter, the group alleged a ranking employee of the university printing press was allegedly forced to sweep the road because of selling vegetables harvested from his own farm to other CLSU personnel.
A nurse at the infirmary was allegedly fired at once after Orden caught her driving a motorbike “creating a loud noise.”
“What an unforgiveable act during this time of the pandemic considering the person involved was a frontliner,” the letter reads.
Two other job order employees were instantly dismissed without giving them time to explain themselves over a one-day absence from work, the group alleged.
Sought for comment via email, the CLSU communications office said Orden “is not available due to his hectic schedules.”
“Moreover, as much as our office wants to accommodate your request, we regret to inform you that these matters shall be addressed first internally once CHED transmits the official documents regarding such complaints for the comments and appropriate actions of the University,” it added.