WITH Ermita, Cebu City Barangay Captain Felicisimo “Emok” Rupinta and all the seven councilors preventively suspended, who will now manage the barangay?

Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) 7 Director Rene Burdeos said only the secretary of DILG, under the directive of the President, is allowed to decide who will compose the new set of barangay officials, to avoid any disruption of services.

Under the Local Government Code, Burdeos said the mayor may choose a replacement only if the vacancy is permanent.

But since Rupinta and the rest of the councilors’ suspension is just temporary, it will be up to the President to decide who to appoint based also on the recommendation of the local DILG office or the City Government, said Burdeos.

When asked the same question, Mayor Tomas Osmeña said he still has to consult DILG about the matter.

Osmeña said the suspension of all the officials of Ermita is a good opportunity to clean up the village of all the vices, particularly the illegal drugs.

“We must take advantage of the suspension,” he said.