Anti-Red Tape Authority officer-in-charge Ernesto Perez (Photo courtesy of ARTA)

MANILA – Anti-Red Tape Authority (ARTA) Deputy Director General for Operations, Undersecretary Ernesto Perez, will head the agency until June 30.

Perez takes over after Director General Jeremiah Belgica and four other ARTA officials were suspended by the Office of the Ombudsman for six months due to a graft case filed by a telecommunications firm.

The suspension order is preventive so the officials could not influence the investigation.

Perez’s appointment as ARTA officer in charge (OIC), signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea on June 10, aims to ensure the "continuous and effective delivery of public service."

"My appointment as OIC of ARTA appears to be providential as I was also appointed as OIC when the agency was found. I thank the President and the officials and staff of ARTA for their continued trust and support," he said in a statement early Friday evening.

He added that ARTA would continue its reform to deliver better government services to the public.

"ARTA is undeterred and will continue to perform its functions against bureaucratic red tape. Please be assured that the day-to-day operations of ARTA will continue to run smoothly under my watch and that services will not be hampered as we perform this sacred duty to further improve the efficiency of government services," Perez said. (PNA)