DepEd’s Francis Varela hailed for anti-corruption efforts
A high-ranking official of the Department of Education was killed in a motorcycle crash in Tanay, Rizal on Saturday morning.
Francis Varela, the agency’s undersecretary for finance, was rushed to the Antipolo District Hospital at 10:45am where he was declared dead.
According to PO3 Melvin Apurangao of the Baras Municipal Police Station, a certain Raymund Mallari who said the accident took place in Sitio Marilaque in Tanay town took Varela to the hospital.
Varela’s remains will be taken to the La Salle Greenhills chapel in San Juan City and will lie there until September 1.
The DepEd issued a statement extolling Varela for spearheading anti-corruption reforms in the agency.
“Usec. Varela has been very instrumental in forging ahead education reforms particularly in ensuring that every cent in the education budget is spent judiciously. He was a staunch advocate of anti-corruption efforts in the department and played a very important role in instituting reforms to ensure that ethical standards are observed in all transactions involving the agency,” the statement read.
“A highly principled man, a sharp mind, a willingness to make tough decisions, and the compassion for the Filipino learner were all hallmarks of Usec. Varela’s five years in DepEd,” the statement added.
Varela, an investment banker before joining government service, graduated magna cum laude in Mathematics from Xavier University in Cagayan De Oro City. He also finished his Master of Science in Industrial Economics at the then Center for Research and Communication (now University of Asia and the Pacific).
Varela spent a decade of his corporate life with the AsianBank Capital and Investment Corporation where he held top posts as chief operating officer and president. He also used to head the Strategic Planning and Corporate Communications of the AB Capital Group.
For two years, he was involved with the Center for Research and Communication as an economist, program director of the Industrial Economics Program, and a faculty member of both Economics and Mathematics departments.
He was also a contributing columnist to Business World and the Philippine Daily Inquirer and served as director or trustee in various foundations and corporations including two universities – Araullo University and the University of Iloilo.
His previous involvements include president of Foundation for Economic Freedom, director of Investment House Application of the Philippines; Phinma Property Holdings Corp.; Microtel Development Corp.; CIP II Power Corp.; Trustee, Phinma Foundation and CRIBS Philippines and Member, National Issues Committee – Makati Business Club.