Pamugas suspended over anomalous ART 160 program

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Pamugas suspended over anomalous ART 160 program

Topic |  


Gov. Aris Aumentado suspended assistant department head Larry Pamugas over the alleged questionable implementation of the Advanced Rice Technology (ART) 160 program under then Gov. Art Yap.

Pamugas was suspended for 60 days starting March 1, 2023, as confirmed by Provincial Legal Officer Atty. Handel Lagunay in a media interview.

Capitol source said that Provincial Administrator Aster Caberte assumed as acting aggie head.


It was learned that the filing of said charges against Pamugas was not in the name of OGAR but OGAR head Leoncio Evasco, former City Mayor Dan Lim, retired Provincial Prosecutor Macario Delusa, retired Judge Suceso Arcamo and Willy Ramasola filed it as concerned citizens.

Per OGAR’s recommendation, Pamugas is facing grave misconduct, gross neglect of duty and commission of an act punishable under the Anti-Graft Law.

The preventive suspension was issued after Pamugas was named respondent in his official capacity as OIC-OPA and as Provincial Action Officer of the ART 160 Program of the provincial government.

Per the complaint filed by the OGAR members, Pamugas allegedly “took advantage of his position, did then and there intentionally and unlawfully received direct material and financial benefit or pecuniary interest from the said program.” The complaint filed said Pamugas received rice seed as “beneficiary” as shown in the distribution list/acknowledgement receipt and bought majority of the rice barn product, 88 out of 93 sacks which he earlier announced during the planning phase as shown in the inventory.

The said acts are “contrary to law and punishable as administrative offenses for Gross Misconduct and Commission of an Act Punishable under the Anti-Graft Law of R.A> 3019.

Pamugas was directed to file his answer in writing in not less than 3 days but not more than 10 days from receipt of this notice.




The order of Gov. Aumentado was issued “considering that the charge involves Gross Misconduct and considering the respondent is occupying a position where he could exert influence or pressure the witness and /or tamper with evidence, Pamugas was hereby ordered to be placed on preventive suspension for a period of 60 days.


Pamugas fights back and filed a case questioning the issuance of an executive order creating the OGAR.


Pamugas has posted a lengthy reply and disappointment on what he called his crucifixion but he did not name
names who are running against his neck.

“Akong simple nga mensahe sa akong mga kahigalaan – Ilansang man ko sa krus, labayan man ko ug bato, gub-a
ang reputasyon sa akong pamilya, tumbi ko, kunis-kunisa ko ninyo, ipalayo ko sa akong mga higala, buhata ang
tanan ninyo’ng gustong buhaton… apan ayaw ninyo ilimod ang inyong dautan nga binuhatan nga inyong gitago
pinaagi sa pagluwat ug mga Executive Orders nga akong gikwestyon sa atong hukmanan sa hustisya,” part of his
lament said.


Pamugas appeared to be unperturbed in the said complaint he was facing.

“Wala ko mahadlok kay wala koy gibuhat nga dautan ug wala koy gitago-an. Lig-on ang akong depensa – dili
mahitungod sa ilang mga gisabwag sa bakak ug mga gibutang-butang nga akusasyon sa social media batok nako –
apan depensa batok niadtong ilang hinimo nga mga akusasyon nga ilang gipirmahan.”

He is hopeful, however, that he has a chance in this fight.

“Sigurado ko nga maayo ang atong laban – dili sa social media diin walay bili ang “due process” apan ngadto sa atong husgado.” (with reports from RVO)

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