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MANILA, Philippines – The camp of Makati Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Junjun” Binay on Thursday, March 19, asked the Court of Appeals (CA) to cite in contempt Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales and Justice Secretary Leila de Lima for refusing to honor a court order stopping his suspension.
The mayor’s camp filed a supplemental petition to amend the earlier petition for contempt they filed before the CA on Tuesday.
Binay earlier asked the CA to cite in contempt the following:
- Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Secretary Manuel Roxas II
- DILG National Capital Region Director Renato Brion
- Police chief director Carmelo Valmoria
- Police chief superintendent Henry Ranola
- Police senior superintendent Elmer Jamias
- Makati Vice Mayor Romulo Peña
The Binay camp filed the petition after the DILG said it still considers Binay’s suspension valid, and that Peña is now the lawful acting mayor of the city.
The DILG said the temporary restraining order (TRO) issued by the appellate court stopping Binay’s suspension came too late – hours after the suspension order had already been served and after Peña was sworn in last Monday.
The TRO, in effect, had “nothing to restrain” because the suspension order was already carried out, the DILG argued.
Binay’s legal counsel, however, said the CA ruling must be respected, adding that only the courts’ interpretation has any bearing on the issue.
The TRO will be in effect for 60 days, while arguments on the legality of the 6-month preventive suspension order are being heard.
The Ombudsman’s order stemmed from a complaint over allegations of irregularities in a contract related to the construction of a Makati City Hall parking building. – Rappler.com