DAVAO CITY, Philippines – The city council here stripped Davao City Councilor Nilo “Small” Abellera Jr. of a committee chairmanship, citing the need to have him immediately replaced for being absent for two weeks now.
Speaking to reporters Tuesday, September 26, Vice Mayor Paolo Z. Duterte said Abellera is no longer the chair of the council’s committee on peace and order and public safety.
“Someone has to filed in. We can’t leave the job empty,” Duterte said.
The councilor was reportedly sick, thus unable to attend the council’s regular sessions for two weeks.
According to Duterte, the other councilors have advised Abellera to file a resignation as chair of the committee if he remains unable to report to work.
Replacing him is Councilor Mabel Sunga Acosta, who assumed the position through a majority vote.
Abellera, a friend of the vice mayor, was tagged in the Senate probe in to the P6.4 billion shabu shipment from China in August.
In one of the Senate hearings, the councilor, a friend of the presidential son, admitted to have met a customs broker alleged to be Duterte’s handler.
Duterte clarified, however, that this development is not related in his alleged involvement in the said controversy.
“Lahat naman siguro nagkakasakit (I think everyone gets sick),” said the vice mayor. – Rappler.com