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The Case of the Pilfered Documents
at the National Library

From "Court set to decide on National Library pilferage of historical documents" by Aries Rufo (Abs-cbnNEWS.com/Newsbreak, 26 May 2008):

The case basically began as a power struggle between [Maria Luisa] Moral and [Adoracion] Bolos shortly after the latter assumed as acting director [of the National Library] in 1992.

Bolos, a former chief of the Filipiniana and Asia division herself in the 70s, sought an inventory of rare books and manuscripts shortly after she assumed as acting director of the Library. Bolos created an external committee to conduct an independent inventory at the FAD.

However, in an exchange of memos between Moral and Bolos, Moral, then the chief of the division, objected to the move, saying it was just a "waste of management" and "not in the interest of the service." She also questioned the external committee’s creation, saying it was merely meant "to harass the FAD, which did not support you in your quest for the directorship."
There is more to this case than meets the eye. It is misleading—and unfortunate—that the case is portrayed as a power struggle that just happened to reveal that documents were being stolen from the National Library. As far as I can tell from the old reports I've read, the pilferage was already taking place in the 1970s—and maybe even earlier. Here's hoping the judge lays out all the facts in her decision and we get to read it in its entirety.

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