Mayor’s rivals to face petition for ‘obstruction’

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Tuesday, May 13, 2014


THREE Daanbantayan councilors will face a recall petition for allegedly failing to support Mayor Augusto Corro.

Councilors Zenaida Abu-cay, Samuel Moralde and Mariabregidorietta Tancawan are accused of slashing the budget for personal services. They also allegedly did not approve the ordinance authorizing the mayor to buy a relocation site for victims of super typhoon Yolanda.

Ten barangay captains and municipal councilors allied with the mayor yesterday showed the media their manifesto of support condemning Abucay, Moralde and Tancawan for also filing graft complaints against Corro, Vice Mayor Gilbert Arrabis and Councilors Chona de Leon, Emmanuel Benatiro and Juanito Ybañez for alleged anomalies in the distribution of relief goods.

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They said they witnessed the relief goods reaching all the victims, adding that these were distributed fairly and equitably.

Salary cuts

Bakhawan Barangay Captain Bernardito Luche showed the appropriation ordinance with the mayor’s line-item veto message. A vetoed item showed the slashing of the P45.517 million personal services item to P39.517 million.

“The budget cut for personal services undermines the ability of the Municipal Government to address the pressing need to maintain necessary manpower for the effective and efficient operation,” the mayor said in his appropriation ordinance with a line-item veto message.

Luche said the salaries of department heads and municipal councilors were also affected.

Councilor de Leon, who was in the press conference, confirmed this.

Luche also showed another ordinance authorizing the realignment of P3.650 million for the purchase of the relocation site that did not bear the signatures of Abucay, Moralde and Tancawan on Feb. 28, 2014, even though they were present that day.

Tancawan said the P6 million slashed from the annual budget was for vacant and funded positions. She said the amount was declared savings by Municipal Budget Officer Marissa Cruz.

She said they decided to distribute the amount to the municipality’s 20 barangays, with each barangay receiving P300,000, as part of the barangay disaster risk reduction and management fund (BDRRMF).

Violation

“The augmentation of BDRRM fund is clearly a creation/inclusion of a new item, which is not provided in the executive budget, which… is a direct violation of Article 415 of the Implementing Rules and Regulations of the Local Government Code,” Corro said in his appropriation ordinance with line-veto message.

“Anyway the need to augment BDRRMF may be addressed later,” he said.

On the accusation that they opposed the purchase of the relocation site, Tancawan said they just wanted to be sure the lot was titled before authorizing the mayor to transact with owner Efren Coyoca.

Tancawan, who is chairperson of the committee on budget, finance and appropriation, said they also wanted to identify the recipients and ensure the recipients were willing to be relocated to the site which is far from the sea.

Lastly, she said, they wanted a fair screening of recipients, regardless of their political affiliation.

“Wa pa nako ma-approbahe ila dayon gikuha sa akong committee, ug ilang gipasar (Before we could approve the matter, they took it from the committee and approved it),” she said.

Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on May 14, 2014.

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