DILG delays dismissal of Roxas ally in Capiz
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) has yet to implement the Ombudsman's order dismissing from office Capiz Governor Victor Tanco Sr, a stalwart of the ruling Liberal Party (LP).
Last week, the Ombudsman ordered the dismissal and lifetime disqualification from public service of Tanco and his son, Security Officer III Vladimir Tanco, for allegedly extorting P3 million from a contractor for the P32.9-million ($709,000) Mambusao District Hospital project.
But in a statement on Thursday, October 29, the DILG said it is still waiting for clarification from the Ombudsman to know whether or not the "Aguinaldo doctrine" applies to the case of the elder Tanco.
The Aguinaldo doctrine is a controversial legal doctrine which renders moot administrative cases of re-elected officials during their previous term.
"Considering that the acts which are the subject of the administrative case against Governor Tanco were committed in 2012 and that he was subsequently re-elected in 2013, the DILG on 22 October 2015 requested a clarification from the Office of the Ombudsman regarding the applicability of the Aguinaldo Doctrine," the department said.
The DILG, however, said it had issued a directive for the implementation of the dismissal order against the governor's son.
In the case of the appointive official, the doctrine was "inapplicable," the DILG added.
Explaining the delay in implementing the dismissal order against the governor – an ally of LP standard-bearer Manuel Roxas II – the DILG said it was only complying with its agreement with the Ombudsman.
In cases involving the possible application of the Aguinaldo Doctrine, the DILG has agreed to seek clarification first with the Ombudsman.
The department said this was the same protocol followed in the implementation of the Ombudsman's orders against the following:
- Jose Montelibano (Mayor, Silay City)
- Cherrlylyn Akbar (Mayor, Isabela City)
- Alfredo Ortega (Mayor, Victoria, Oriental Mindoro)
- Jose Angelo Dominguez (Mayor, Castillejos, Zambales)
- Angelito Saclolo, Jr. (Sangguniang Panlungsod Member, Cabanatuan City)
The DILG, which used to be headed by Roxas, had previously drawn flak for allegedly delaying the implementation of dismissal orders against LP allies while rushing dismissal orders against the party's political foes.
Four of the 5 other incumbents whom the DILG delayed dismissing run and won as LP in 2013. They were Montelibano, Akbar, Ortega, and Saclolo.
In March, the Ombudsman issued a suspension order against controversial Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin Binay Jr over an allegedly overpriced city building.
Binay slammed the DILG – then under Roxas – for moving quickly to implement the order, despite the mayor's request for the DILG to withhold its enforcement because of his pending petition with the Court of Appeals.
Earlier this month, the Ombudsman issued a dismissal order against the Makati mayor.
The DILG served the order at Binay's house, prompting Binay's camp to decry the move as "harassment." – with research by Michael Bueza/Rappler.com