Aquino accepts NBI chief’s resignation with ‘deep regret’-A A +A
Friday, September 6, 2013
PRESIDENT Benigno Aquino III said Friday that he accepted the resignation of National Bureau of Investigation (NBI) Director Nonnatus Rojas "with deep regret."
Despite his short stint at the NBI, which started in January 2012, the Chief Executive hailed Rojas for transforming the bureau from an agency "reeling from very serious controversies, to one that has regained pride of place" as the foremost investigative arm of the Department of Justice (DOJ).
He said that Rojas' assumption to NBI post was remarkable as he was only expected to serve as an officer-in-charge when former Director Magtanggol Gatdula was dismissed over allegations of kidnapping and extortion attempts by NBI agents.
"Instead, Director Rojas gave up a career spent as a prosecutor in the Department of Justice in order to stay on as NBI Director. He did not fail us. Director Rojas excelled in his assigned tasks, and was instrumental in restoring the credibility of the NBI," Aquino said in a statement.
The President cited Rojas' health for accepting his resignation.
"We in government recognize, however, that his period of service has taken a serious toll on his health," he said.
Rojas, a hypertensive, said he has been advised by his doctor to take a break from work "sometime back."
"Bumalik ako sa doktor ko kahapon (Thursday), and that he said, not good. So that's why I have my complete examination kanina (Friday). ill return next week para talagang maevaluate annd see what's needed for me to be brought back to normalcy," he told reporters on his last day at work.
He said his decision to leave the NBI for good had the blessing of his family.
Rojas thanked the NBI for working for the benefit of the people, especially for those who considered the agency as their last resort to secure justice.
"Our people say we have regained our classification as the premier investigative agency of the country," he said.
Last Monday, Rojas tendered his irrevocable resignation, citing the apparent lack of trust to the NBI by the President.
Prior to his resignation, Aquino admitted that there were NBI officials who were not trustworthy due to their link to some senators who were allegedly involved in the pork barrel scam.
He also said that these NBI officials allegedly tipped to Janet Lim-Napoles her impending warrant on August 14 for serious illegal detention of her former aide and whistle-blower in the fund mess, Benhur Luy.
Napoles, along with her co-accused brother, Reynald Lim, went into hiding. She only surfaced last week by surrendering to the President. Her brother is still in hiding.
"It is my belief that it would be an unwarranted imposition on the well-being of a model public servant, for Director Rojas, to remain in the NBI.
For this reason, I am constrained to accept, with deep regret, his resignation," Aquino said.
In the meantime, he ordered Justice Secretary Leila de Lima to directly supervise the NBI, including the appointment of an OIC to ensure the effective continuation of the NBI's tasks. (SDR/Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)