Lepanto Mining files corruption charge against Jasareno
Lepanto Consolidated Mining Company filed with the Office of the Ombudsman a corruption complaint against former Mines and Geosciences Bureau director and Environment Undersecretary Leo Jasareno for violation of the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.
Lepanto in a statement cited bad faith and the alleged gross inexcusable negligence of Jasareno in announcing on national TV on September 27, 2016 that Lepanto had been recommended for suspension by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources audit team.
Lepanto claimed that the audit team actually signed a report concluding that “the company substantially complied with the pertinent provisions of the environmental and mining laws, rules and regulations” and did not recommend a penalty.
The company said Jasareno’s conflicting statement caused undue injury to it.
Lepanto said that Jasareno’s “misrepresentation of the contents of the audit report besmirched the good reputation of Lepanto as a responsible mining company.”
“It also caused stock prices of Lepanto “A” and “B” shares to drastically fall, and adversely affected Lepanto’s credit standing.” it said, adding that the act of Jasareno was considered a corrupt practice.
Jasareno, who is the former head of the mining audit team, earlier said Lepanto was one of the mines that did not pass the audit.
“I have not received a copy of the complaint yet. That’s how it is. If you’re a public official, anyone can file a complaint against you,” he said.
Jasareno was earlier dismissed from the DENR after President Rodrigo Duterte appointed Wilfredo Moncano as acting director of the MGB.
Environment Secretary Regina said she would appeal Jasareno’s retention.
“Leo did not resign. When I was in France, there was an order that director Moncano will be the MGB head and that renders him (Jasareno) out of DENR. I will really like Jasareno’s retention. I feel that the president is a good man and I respect his decision but I am looking forward to meeting him and sort things out ,” Lopez said.
“I’m really happy with his services. He did the audit and to put show cause to 30 miners, that takes courage. Right now, I am keeping him as a senior resource person,” Lopez said.