Ombud lawyers now only need one year practice

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Monday, April 14, 2014


THE Deputy Ombudsman for Mindanao urged young lawyers to apply to their office after the Civil Service Commission (CSC) approved the proposal to lower the qualification standards for the vacant Graft Investigation and Prosecution Officer (Gipo) positions.

Deputy Ombudsman Rodolfo Elman, in an interview with Sun.Star Davao, said the amendment was proposed by Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales and was approved by the CSC last April 1.

The amendment focused on lowering the years of experience required for the Gipo positions.

The previous qualification guideline for the years of experience was at least three years in the practice of law for the lowest-ranked Gipo position. But with the amendment approved by CSC, those with at least one year of law practice are already eligible for the Gipo I position while those who are applying for the Gipo II position will be needing at least three years of experience. Those applying for the Gipo III position will have to accumulate at least five years of law practice while those aspiring for the highest Gipo position should have at least five years of experience along with either three years of supervisory experience or a master's degree relevant to the practice of law.

Apart from the lowered experience requirements, applicants for the Gipo I position should have at least eight hours of training while the next ranks for the Gipo positions require 24, 48 and 60 hours of training, respectively.

Elman also said that the amendment comes with an increase in salary grade as well.

"The salary grade of our Gipos are between 25-28 so their salary will be ranging from P50,000 to P60,000 and that even excludes allowances and bonuses. With that salary grade there is no reason that they could be tempted to take bribes and be corrupted because the pay is already good," Elman said.

But Elman clarified that apart from the experience and training requirements, the selection of the eligible applicants still boils down to the attitude.

"We need applicants who are service-oriented since this office is all about public service. We also need young leaders who are passionate and have a strong grasp of honesty and integrity. Investigators and prosecutors with no integrity are the last thing we need because we don't want officers who are easily corrupted," Elman said.

The Deputy Ombudsman earlier revealed that their office is lacking more than 60 plantilla positions and with the help of the amended requirements, they are expecting to address the lack of manpower.

Published in the Sun.Star Davao newspaper on April 15, 2014.

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