5 mayors may face raps over absence during “Ompong” onslaught

January 22, 2019

FIVE Northern Luzon mayors may face administrative sanctions before the Office of the Ombudsman while six others will get a written admonition for not being in their respective posts during the onslaught of typhoon Ompong in September last year, the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said yesterday said.

According to DILG assistant secretary and spokesperson Jonathan Malaya, based on the findings and recommendation of the validation team, the explanation of the five mayors were found to be “inadequate and unjustified” and probably violated existing laws, rules and regulations that may merit administrative sanctions.

The DILG refused to name the concerned mayors who are either from the Cagayan Valley or Cordillera Administrative Region.

“Despite having knowledge of the impending typhoon and the DILG advisory, said mayors were not in their post during the typhoon. Such act on their part may be considered as dereliction of duty, negligence or other administrative offense. We have referred their case to the Office of the Ombudsman,” Malaya said.

The six mayors, according to Malaya, will receive a written admonition from DILG Secretary Eduardo Año for disregarding the DILG advisory/directives and for their failure to personally supervise and/or manage the evacuation, rescue and relief operations of their constituents on September 14, 15, and 16, 2018.

“Secretary Ano’s directive was very clear. The physical presence of the mayor in his area of responsibility is crucial. His absence adversely affects the operation of the LGU and it is their constituents who suffer,” Malaya said.

The DILG reminded all local chief executives and all other local elective officials that they are considered “on-call” any time of the day as essence of public service.

A total of 16 mayors from Cagayan Valley and CAR were issued show cause orders after they were nowhere to be found when “Ompong” unleashed its might in their area of concern.

With Jun Legaspi