BuCor chief, BJMP execs sued over unlawful appointments
Ralph Edwin Villanueva (The Philippine Star) - February 28, 2020 - 12:00am

MANILA, Philippines — Bureau of Corrections Director General Gerald Bantag and Bureau of Jail Management and Penology (BJMP) officials are facing a complaint from “concerned” BuCor employees for supposed unlawful appointments.

In their complaint dated Jan. 20 and filed before the Office of the Ombudsman, the unnamed employees said Bantag and BJMP officials committed grave abuse of authority, grave misconduct and usurpation of authority.

Bantag allegedly appointed members of the BJMP to BuCor, despite him still being an official of the BJMP, according to the complainants.

They said the BuCor chief violated Rule IV, Section 13b7 of the Civil Service Omnibus Rules on Appointments and other Human Resource Actions (OROAOHRA) when he appointed BJMP jail chief Inspector Alberto Tapiru Jr. as officer-in-charge (OIC) of the Davao Prison and Penal Farm.

Shortly after, Tapiru was then promoted to jail superintendent and assumed the position of OIC and started issuing notices and memoranda.

Bantag also allegedly violated the OROAOHRA when he entered into a contract of service with retired jail senior inspector Angelina Bautista as confidential assistant.

The complainants said that on Nov. 1 last year, Bantag designated Bautista, a contractual employee, as OIC of the Correctional Institution for Women. She was also a former caterer for the CIW.

This designation was shot down, as Justice Secretary Menardo Guevarra cited the OROAOHRA in a letter, saying “no consultant, contractual, non-career or detailed employee shall be designated to a position exercising control or supervision over regular and career employees.”

Bantag, however, issued a memorandum order dated Oct. 18, 2019 to convene the BuCor Human Resource Merit, Promotion and Selection Board to deliberate on the application of his two candidates to fill the vacant positions of administrative officer V, which included Bautista.

Bautista was appointed “administrative officer V of Iwahig Prison and Penal Farm on Nov. 11, 2019,” the complaint read.

The complaint also alleged that Bantag appointed BuCor spokesman and deputy director general for reformation Gabriel Chaclag, “whose position is only for a presidential appointee.”

Fifteen other BuCor officials were also included in the complaint.

In a phone interview, Chaclag told The STAR that the BuCor has yet to receive a copy of the complaint.               

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