From the Office of the Presidential Spokesperson
In an ambush interview on August 22, 2013, President Benigno S. Aquino III mentioned an existing body composed of Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, Secretary of Justice Leila de Lima, and Commission on Audit Chairperson Grace Pulido-Tan.
The President was referring to the Inter-Agency Anti-Graft Coordinating Council or the IAAGCC. The following is a Q&A on the IAAGCC and its annexes:
1. What is the IAAGCC?
The Inter-Agency Anti-Graft Coordinating Council (IAAGCC) is “a voluntary alliance of agencies of the government” that “have taken the initiative to bind themselves to set up the [IAAGCC] and to formulate and develop concerted techniques and strategies in the prevention, detection, investigation and prosecution of graft cases.” It was established, initially, through a memorandum of agreement executed on June 11, 1997 by heads of agencies that have been mandated to uphold integrity and accountability in the public service. It gained official recognition through Administrative Order No. 79, dated July 28, 1999.
2. What are its objectives and mandate?
Through the MOU, and in pursuit of the common fight against graft and corruption, the members voluntarily agreed to various undertakings, including the “[creation of] inter-agency response teams whenever necessary to ensure speedy and effective fraud detection, investigation and prosecution of grand corruption cases …”
In order to implement such undertakings, the IAAGCC Guidelines were issued, pursuant to which the IAAGCC member agencies agreed to the creation of special inter-agency task forces for specific graft cases that meet the following criteria:
a) complex fraud-related government transactions with national impact;
b) involving the amount of P50 million pesos or higher; and
c) involving high ranking public officials with the position of bureau director or higher.
3. Who are the IAAGCC members tasked to investigate the PDAF case?
The composition of the Special Inter-Agency Task Force, which shall conduct a joint investigation into the allegations of PDAF misuse, shall be investigators, technical experts, and prosecutors from the Ombudsman, as lead, the DOJ, and COA.
4. Why was the IAAGCC tapped for the case?
The IAAGCC, specifically Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales, Justice Secretary Leila M. de Lima, and COA Chair Grace Pulido-Tan, has been tapped to investigate the PDAF cases because of their unquestionable integrity and impartiality.
Moreover, the IAAGCC will facilitate and expedite the investigation and prosecution process, and obviate duplication of efforts and the overlapping of jurisdictions of the various agencies involved, viz., the Ombudsman, the DOJ, and the COA.
5. When did the body meet?
Two weeks ago, member-agencies of the IAAGCC, specifically the Office of the Ombudsman, together with the DOJ and the COA, convened to discuss avenues of investigation and cooperation as regards allegations of PDAF misuse in connection to the Napoles issue.
6. What is the scope of the investigation?
Under the IAAGCC, the Ombudsman, the Justice Secretary, and the COA Chair will conduct a fact-finding investigation with the end-view of forwarding its results either to the Office of the Ombudsman or the DOJ, as the case may be, with respect to further preliminary investigation, criminal prosecution, disciplinary proceedings, and asset recovery.