Did Virgie ‘decapitate’ Pelagio?-A A +A
Friday, July 20, 2012
VISAYAS Deputy Ombudsman for Visayas Pelagio Apostol has explained further why he doesn't want an assistant director.
When Virginia Palanca-Santiago retired Monday as asst. director, Pelagio said he didn't need her replacement: the assistant would impede "flow of communication."
On Wednesday, he said more: a strong assistant (like Santiago) would "decapitate" and "isolate" the head of office.
The public can only speculate what he meant by that. One interpretation is that the chief wanted to be at the center of events in his office and Santiago was there instead.
Apparently, Virgie drew more press coverage than Apostol did. But, as reporters attest, Virgie provided easier access and frank answers and didn't b.s. them.
Apostol might disagree but he could've improved relations with media and could've made his assistant take his lead and follow his beat. Isn't that what bosses do: inspire, not quarrel with, the staff?
The assistant can make the job of his chief easier without stealing limelight or thunder. But the boss has to define limits of authority under the organization's structure.
Did Virgie exceed her mandate? Few would think so. A theory, ugly but not far-fetched, was that the two top officials disagreed on how to mete out justice on some VIPs they were investigating.
Correction: "Sergio” in yesterday's heading of News Sense should've read "Pelagio." Sergio is the congressman; Pelagio, mentioned repeatedly in the body text, is the deputy ombudsman.
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Published in the Sun.Star Cebu newspaper on July 20, 2012.