January 6, 2018, Quezon City – Commission on Higher Education (CHED) Chairperson Dr. Patricia B. Licuanan responds to accusations made by Puwersa ng Bayaning Atleta Partylist Rep. Jericho Nograles that she did not obtain Malacañang approval for official travels she made in 2017.
The CHED Chairperson maintains, “I get a travel authority from the Office of the President for all my travel including personal trips. This is well documented. I issue travel authorities for all CHED officials but not for myself.”
“It appears that what Rep. Nograles shared on his Facebook account as basis for his accusations is the internal Authority to Travel Abroad, which is routinely used to process the funds and is an attachment for securing Malacañang approval,” the Chairperson added.
CHED International Affairs Staff Director Atty. Lily Frieda Milla clarifies that, “all official travels of the Chairperson are covered by appropriate travel authorities from the Executive Secretary and signed by Deputy Executive Secretary Menardo Guevarra.” Milla further explains, “the Chairperson is allowed to travel business class for long-haul flights as warranted under OP Memorandum Circular No. 7, s.2010 and because of her vertigo.”
For the benefit of the general public, attached to this statement are copies of the eight official Malacañang travel authority documents that Rep. Nograles accused the CHED Chairperson of not having.