Ex-DOJ chief stays on as university prexy

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Sunday, July 13, 2014


FORMER Justice secretary Artemio Tuquero has remained president of Pamantasan ng Lungsod ng Maynila (PLM) after a Manila judge issued a three-day stay order against a board resolution removing him from his post for academic deficiency.

The 72-hour temporary restraining order (TRO) issued by Manila Regional Trial Court (RTC) First Vice Executive Judge Reynaldo Alhambra is good until Monday but a hearing will be conducted on the same day to determine if it will be extended to 20 days.

Tuquero, also a retired Court of Appeals (CA) justice, questioned the Board of Regents (BOR) Resolution dated July 8, 2014 recalling his election as the university president on the basis of the decision of Civil Service Commission (CSC) that found him ineligible to hold the post due to lack of doctor's degree.

On July 9, former President now Manila Mayor Joseph Estrada sent a letter to PLM board chairman Amado Valdez designating him as acting president of the PLM, citing Section 4 of the PLM Charter (Republic Act 4196).

However, Tuquero pointed out in his petition that the BOR resolution is null and void because it contravenes the provision under the PLM Charter, which states that the university president shall be elected by the BOR, and that he can only be removed for "incapacity, incompetence, dishonesty and/or conviction of a crime involving moral turpitude."

He said the university president is elected by the BOR and not appointed by the City Mayor and that he "cannot be summarily removed by virtue of a hastily constituted Board Resolution."

Tuquero, who served as Estrada's justice secretary from 2000 until his ouster for alleged corruption in January 2001, accused Valdez and other respondents in the case of violating his right to due process.

Tuquero was elected president of the state-run college in July 2 last year. (Virgil Lopez/Sunnex)

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