DFA slaps charges vs PH envoy

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    THE investigating panel created by Foreign Affairs Secretary Teodoro Locsin Jr. has recommended the filing of charges against former Philippine Ambassador to Brazil Marichu Mauro for allegedly abusing her 51-year-old Filipina household helper.

    Locsin, in a Twitter announcement, said he has notified Malacañang about the findings of the panel headed by Ezzedine Tago, the country’s Consul General to Sydney, Australia.

    “Charge served on her at 8:25 a.m. today. I sent a memo on it to the President. The hearing panel’s report and charge will be passed upon and approved or disapproved by the Board of Foreign Service Administration (BFSA), and finally, by the Secretary. It shouldn’t take too long,” Locsin said.

    In another tweet, Locsin said the result of the BFSA deliberations will be submitted to his office for final approval.

    Locsin said he has ordered the Tago panel to furnish Malacañang, through the Presidential Management Staff, with copies of the transcripts of its hearings.

    Locsin though did not provide additional details about what specific cases were recommended, while other DFA officials Undersecretary Sarah Lou Arriola, who is in charge of the department’s migrant workers affairs, said she does not have authority to speak on the matter.

    Locsin ordered the recall of Mauro after video footages of her alleged maltreatment was made public by a Brazilian news website. The envoy returned to the country last week.

    The panel had interrogated both Mauro and her former elderly household helper, who returned to the country last month.

    Mauro was named envoy to Brazil in 2018 after serving a stint as consul general in Milan, Italy.

    She also served in Bahrain, Israel and Belgium. She joined the DFA in 1995.

    As ambassador to Brazil, Mauro has concurrent jurisdiction on Colombia, Venezuela, Guyana and Suriname.