MAMBALING, Cebu City Barangay Councilor Anne Marie Palomo assumed as acting village chief on Thursday, Jan. 10, following the suspension of Barangay Captain Gines Abellana, after the committee of three of the City Council found him guilty of abuse of authority.
While this developed, Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) Cebu City acting chief Emma Joyevelyn Calvo said they will let their legal office determine if there is anything irregular in the implementation of Abellana’s suspension.
“We already received a letter-inquiry from the secretariat of the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Cebu City, and since the suspension was already served, we will let our legal department in the regional level decide on it, since it has authority,” Calvo said.
Palomo took her oath as acting barangay captain before Mayor Tomas Osmeña after Abellana’s suspension was served last Wednesday, Jan. 9.
“By operation of law, I need to assume office because the position is already vacant after the suspension was served,” she said.
Palomo, who is allied with the mayor’s Bando Osmeña-Pundok Kauswagan, is the first councilor of the barangay.
The City Council ordered the suspension of Abellana for withholding the salaries of four barangay councilors, including Palomo. The Sangguniang Panlungsod (SP) secretary and the City Treasurer were directed to implement the suspension.
Abellana, who is allied with Partido Barug of former mayor Michael Rama, withheld the salaries of Palomo, Edwil Managbanag, Victoriano Laborte and Neonita Cuestas after they refused to render service as officer of the day in the barangay hall on designated days of the week.
Their refusal, Abellana said, violated Section 392 of the Local Government Code, which requires barangay councilors to assist the barangay captain in the discharge of duties and functions.
As she assumed office, Palomo said the delivery of basic services and the garbage problem of the barangay were her priorities.
In a separate interview, Osmeña said the basic services in the barangay should be restored.
The mayor also announced that a road concreting project will be implemented in Sitio Alaska.
“I’m very happy to announce we have a project to concrete the road of Alaska, which is the biggest portion of Mambaling. It’s worth P22 million, because I tried to implement that when I was congressman but Rama blocked it,” he said. (RVC)