Paolo Duterte still officially ‘on leave’

RESIGNED Davao City Vice Mayor Paolo Z. Duterte is still marked as on leave in the roll call during the first session of the 18th Davao City Council Tuesday, January 09, pending the official oath-taking of his successor.

Davao City Councilor Bernard Al-ag remained as acting vice mayor, as he is yet to take oath as vice mayor.

Al-ag in Tuesday’s edition of Pulong Pulong ni Pulong media forum said that the oath-taking is slated within this week after the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) will receive the official letter of acceptance of the resignation signed by President Rodrigo Duterte.

Davao City Councilor Danilo Dayanghirang in a privilege hour also on Tuesday, expressed his concern over the possible "vacuum of leadership" following the status of Al-ag as acting vice mayor.

He added that since the resignation has been announced, it is already proper for the acting vice mayor to take the vice mayor seat.

"We want to clarify this because there should not be anymore an acting vice mayor since the resignation has been accepted unless there are some other bigger requirements," he said.

Al-ag said he cannot immediately sit and replace the post since the council needs the go signal from the DILG which the agency will give only if they have already received the official copy of the acceptance of the resignation.

“Once we receive the official document, we can proceed with the oath-taking, there will be no vacuum of leadership because I am the acting vice mayor," he said.

Al-ag said that the DILG is expected to receive the official copy of the acceptance yesterday or today. He added that after the oath-taking, his seat as councilor will be vacant.

“My post as a city councilor will remain vacant until there will be a new councilor that will be appointed by the president according to Local Government Code Section 44. Davao City is a chartered and highly urbanized city so only the president can appoint any vacant position of the council through the recommendation of the local party, ruling party which is the Hugpong sa Tawong Lungsod,” he said.

He also added that since his last term as councilor has been interrupted, the law allows him to run for councilor again in the 2019 elections.

But, he said, he does not have any plan in place yet.

He said he had earlier planned on returning to private life after he ends his three terms as councilor, but becoming vice mayor makes him reconsider that plan.

What he can promise now, he said, is to give his best as vice mayor. He also assured that the council will continue to support Davao City Sara Z. Duterte-Carpio in her plans and projects for the city.

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