CEBU City Mayor Michael Rama yesterday appointed City Administrator Jose Marie Poblete as officer-in-charge of City Hall when he continues his 22-day vacation leave today.
Rama no longer designated Vice Mayor Joy Augustus Young as acting mayor during his absence, saying that Young “has not given due respect” to his policies.
As acting mayor, Young suspended the clearing operations in Sitio Bato, Barangay Ermita last week, a project that Rama pushed after a fire razed the area last month.
Young also issued a cease-and-desist order against the construction of a daycare center in Sitio Mahayahay in Barangay Apas.
“I thought I could give it (designation) to him (Young) but now I don’t think he knows what he’s doing,” said Rama, in a news conference yesterday.
When Rep. Tomas Osmeña (Cebu City, south district) was still mayor, Rama pointed out, every time he was designated as acting mayor, he respected what Osmeña had put in place.
“There is such a thing as due respect,” he said.
Rama went to City Hall yesterday and signed the memorandum designating Poblete as OIC of the city from May 28 to 30. Rama’s second term as mayor will begin on June 30, seven weeks after defeated Osmeña by some 6,000 votes.
The memo to Poblete reads, in part: “You are hereby authorized to sign all pertinent documents and perform such other functions as may be necessary, subject to the provisions set forth in Republic Act (RA) 7160 otherwise known as the Local Government Code of 1991 and such other pertinent rules and regulations.”
Section 46 provides that the local chief executive can designate an OIC if he or she is traveling within the country but outside his territorial jurisdiction for a period not exceeding three consecutive days.
The OIC, however, doesn’t have the power to appoint, suspend or dismiss employees.
Asked about the matter, Young said Rama’s move to appoint Poblete instead of him is no big deal.
Young said he issued a suspension order on the clearing operation in Ermita because he wanted all the affected families in the area to be heard and consulted.
“We, the people in power, should have the patience and heart for them. Those who have opposed it deserve to be listened to one more time. We have to give them that peace of mind,” he said.
Young said the consultation he scheduled with Bato residents yesterday pushed through, but he has turned over the matter to the Presidential Commission for the Urban Poor.
He said if his office will lead the consultation, it might be construed as politicking.
As to the cease-and-desist order he issued on the construction of Mahayahay Daycare Center, Young explained the stage in the area would be demolished.
The construction of the stage, he said, was funded by him and Osmeña for the Marai Homeowners’ Association in Sitio Mahayahay.
Young said he will sue Apas Barangay Captain Ramil Ayuman if they will push through with the demolition of the stage.
Rama’s 22-day vacation will end in the second week of June.