NINE Toledo City officials are facing another complaint for their alleged refusal to approve the P5-million “poverty-alleviation program” of Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (Tesda) in 2017.
Assisted by lawyer Inocencio dela Cerna, complainant Elmer Canillo of Barangay Dumlog filed criminal and administrative charges against the city officials before the Office of the President.
The respondents are Acting Vice Mayor Marjorie Perales and Councilors Jay Sigue, Antonio Borja Jr., Merly Abad, Rogelio Caburnay Sr., Arlene Zambo, Caesar Ian Geronimo Zambo, Louis Nicholas Espinosa, and Leo Dolino.
But in a separate interview yesterday, one of the respondents said they didn’t approve the allocation because some of the requirements were not complied with.
Canillo accused them of grave misconduct, conduct prejudicial to the best interest of service, dereliction of duty and non-feasance.
“The 638 beneficiaries were denied the opportunity and chance to improve the quality of their lives that would have been made possible through the free Tesda skills training program,” the complaint read.
Tesda’s Bottom-Up Budgeting program allocated P5 million to the Toledo City Government. The amount was returned to the national treasury after the respondents disapproved the proposed program.
“The grave inaction by the respondents is an open defiance and gross disobedience to the President’s poverty alleviation program,” the complaint read.
The Toledo City’s Local Poverty Reduction Action Team (LPRAT) had approved the program, said Canillo.
“It is inconceivable and lamentable to be denied or deprived of the vital government programs, especially if the denial and deprivations emanate from those who (are) expected to serve,” the complaint read.
The complainant said the respondents neglected their duties and abused their authority when they rejected the poverty-alleviation program.
“These officials were elected to serve their constituents but they have turned their eyes and became all deaf and dumb to the needs of their constituents,” the complaint read.
Meanwhile, Caburnay, who serves as acting chairman of the committee on education, said that the LPRAT failed to provide necessary documents for the allocation’s approval, including a resolution of endorsement with signatures of all of its members and a list of the program’s beneficiaries.
“Mahimo diay na i-approve nga base sa among gihuptan nga rules and regulations, before mi mo-approve ana kinahanglan pa ni i-refer og committee (education), kinahanglan pa sad ni namo tun-an, kami pa lang ang madaut (According to our rules and regulations, the matter must first be referred to the committee on education for study before it can be approved),” Caburnay told SunStar Cebu yesterday.
Caburnay said aside from documentary requirements, they also need to summon Tesda officials to shed light on the project before he can issue a committee report.
He also accused Evangeline Solon, an appointee of Acting Mayor Antonio Yapha Sr., of badgering him and other councilors to immediately approve the release of the P5-million allocation. (JKV, SCG of Superbalita)