Mayor: Extension request ‘not a sign of weakness’-A A +A
Thursday, January 17, 2013
ANGELES CITY – “It is a legal option that is made available by law to any respondent to a case, and we availed of it to enable us prepare our answers in an airtight fashion,” said lawyer Alberto Pamintuan III, son and legal counsel of Mayor Edgardo Pamintuan.
Pamintuan III was referring to a motion filed by his father’s camp last January 7 seeking a 15-day extension to the respondents’ filing of counter affidavit on the charges filed before the Ombudsman by tabloid stringer Robledo Sanchez on alleged illegal hiring of job order employees by Pamintuan.
Sanchez made the announcement of Pamintuan’s motion Tuesday.
“As Mr. Sanchez himself reported, we wanted to wait for the additional affidavits from the complainants which were announced through the media, so that our response will be more thorough,” he said.
Pamintuan III, however, clarified that Sanchez and the Lazatin media bureau have not been authorized to issue statements and press releases on behalf of the mayor.
“It is just odd and funny that the announcement of our seeking of extension of the filing of our counter affidavits and reasons for doing so came from Sanchez and the Lazatin media bureau. It seems Lazatin’s media group has appointed itself to our service,” he said in a jest.
Pamintuan III, a new lawyer, however, said that the seeking of an extension should not be construed as a sign of weakness of the position of the mayor’s camp to Sanchez’ charges that many believe have been pushed by Congressman Tarzan Lazatin, who is challenging the elder Pamintuan in the May elections.
“The truth of the matter is that we shall be able to strengthen our position and even the new affidavits have not bolstered the case of Sanchez,” he said.
Five individuals executed affidavits Monday claiming they were “ghost employees” of city hall.
But City Administrator Dennis Albert Pamintuan said the complainants only perjured themselves because they are “nowhere in our roster and payrolls of job order workers” of city hall.
“Those who claimed they are ghost employees may end up spooking themselves as we intend to file perjury charges against them, and perhaps even seek civil damages from them,” he said.
Published in the Sun.Star Pampanga newspaper on January 17, 2013.