President Mauricio Macri accepted the resignation of presidential undersecretary Valentín Díaz Gilligan on Monday following an investigation by El País newspaper which revealed he had deposited 980,000 euros (US$1.2 million) in an Andorran bank account and later omitted such information from his affidavits as a public servant.
Díaz Gilligan denies that the money belonged to him, instead claiming that Brazilian football-guru Francisco Casal, a personal friend, had asked him to deposit the cash in Andorra on his behalf.
Initial reports suggested Macri would decline the resignation until the Anti-corruption Office (OI) and the Judiciary decide on the matter. However, the pressure surrounding the public servant has been relentless.
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The government largely played down the Díaz Gilligan scandal. It has also all but ignored the much quieter storm surrounding the latest revelations by Perfil about Finance Minister Luis Caputo’s failure to declare stakes in offshore investment fund management companies, which the Finance Minister has denied.
On Sunday, Cabinet Chief Marco Peña said the money that Díaz Gilligan had deposited was related to his activities “prior to becoming a public servant.”
“We have an Anti-Corruption Office which investigates public servants,” Peña told Radio Mitre. “We’re talking about two or three public officials among thousands.”