OUTGOING Cebu City Councilor Jerry Guardo is optimistic that he will be able to serve as a member of the City Council again for another three years.
Guardo, who celebrated his birthday on Thursday, June 20, 2019, posted on Facebook: “Naka move on nako Lord. Nadawat na naku ang resulta sa miaging piniliay ug akong gi respito ang hukom sa katawhan sa norte distrito sa pag pili og mga kandidato na angayan ibutang sa pwesto sa konseho sa Siyudad sa Sugbo (I have moved on, Lord. I’ve accepted the election results and I respect the decision of the north district voters in choosing who should represent them in the City Council).”
“But with the latest turn of events, if it is really your plan, I humbly submit myself to your calling for public service. This is probably the most precious birthday gift I received from you, Lord. The possibility of serving back Cebuanos for the next 3 years. Praise God!” his post read.
In a resolution dated May 28, the en banc affirmed the Commission on Elections (Comelec) First Division’s decision to cancel the certificate of candidacy (COC) of reelected Cebu City Councilor Alvin Arcilla.
Arcilla was given five calendar days starting June 14 or until Wednesday, June 19, to appeal the Comelec en banc resolution and to secure a temporary restraining order (TRO).
Lawyer Marchel Sarno, Cebu City election officer for the north district, said as of Thursday, June 20, they had yet to receive an update if Arcilla was able to secure a TRO.
Arcilla won as councilor in the May 13 elections and got the last spot among the candidates for councilor in the north district.
Guardo, who ranked ninth, will move up to the eighth spot if Arcilla fails to secure a TRO from the Supreme Court.
Since the five-day period given to Arcilla to file an appeal has lapsed, Sarno said any interested party may now file a writ of execution so the en banc resolution can be enforced.
“As of today, we haven’t received any update if he has secured a TRO already. If they cannot secure a TRO five days after June 14, then the other camp or the interested party can now file a motion for execution of the resolution of the Comelec First Division,” he said.
SunStar Cebu called Arcilla for an interview but his phone was switched off.
Sarno added that they will just wait for the writ of execution and take orders from the en banc.
“It’s either we create a new set of board of canvassers or just retain the previous board. We will proclaim whoever the Comelec en banc deemed as the winner,” he said.
In a March 19 resolution, the First Division cancelled the COC of Arcilla and Cebu City Councilor Sisinio “Bebs” Andales after a registered voter, Allen Canoy, questioned their candidacy as they were already on their third and final term.
Comelec did not agree with Arcilla’s argument that his term was effectively interrupted when he served his suspension imposed by the Office of the President in 2016.
Arcilla and Andales were among the city officials who were suspended for six months in 2016 for granting P20,000 calamity assistance to all officials and employees of City Hall in 2013 in the wake of the earthquake and typhoon Yolanda. (JGS, WBS)