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SSS insiders offer to spill the beans on stock deals.

At least two insiders have approached the chair of the House of Representatives banks and financial intermediaries committee to shed light on allegations that some Social Security System (SSS) executives profited from trading stocks for their personal accounts using brokers handling the pension fund's equity investments.

Committee chair Rep. Ben Evardone said in an interview with radio station dzBB that 'two people want to talk to me to give various information regarding the dealings at SSS.'

The two, whom he did not identify, wanted to spill the beans on 'the issue of the trading of stocks.'

Evardone added that many complainants have approached him too regarding another anomaly at the SSS which involves the supposed use by 'syndicates' of inactive accounts as dummies to take out loans.

Evardone said the 'syndicates' would forge the signatures of unsuspecting policyholders who tend not to inquire frequently.

He cited the case of one SSS member received only half of the retirement benefits due to the unauthorized loans taken out of his account.

Evardone will file on Monday a House resolution to initiate a committee inquiry once Congress resumes its session later this month.

He said the House would wield its oversight powers to 'look at the bigger picture' of the stock profiteering controversy. 'We will look into the protocols, the procedures, the policies,' he said.

In a separate statement, good government committee chair Rep. Johnny Pimentel said the SSS executives involved in the scheme should 'be constrained to empty out their pockets of their dishonest earnings,' because their profits from the stock information 'rightfully belong to and should go to the SSS.'

The controversy came to light after SSS Commissioner Jose Gabriel La Vina filed a complaint for serious dishonesty and grave misconduct against executive vice president for investments Rizaldy Capulong.

Capulong, equities investment division chief Reginald Candelaria, equities product development head Ernesto Francisco Jr. and chief actuary George Ongkeko Jr. - were accused of withholding the stockbrokers' investment advice from the SSS for themselves.

Capulong was deemed by the SSS leadership to have illegally profited from his position since he used the very same stockbrokers who manage the state pension fund's portfolio.

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Publication:Philippines Daily Inquirer (Makati City, Philippines)
Date:Nov 6, 2017
Words:428
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