According to Abellana, the suspension order of the Cebu City Council doesn’t have any effect and it is only the Department of the Interior and Local Government that has the authority to suspend officials.
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Unless DILG tells him so: Mambaling capt. won’t step down
Odessa O. Leyson (The Freeman) - January 11, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Suspended Mambaling barangay captain Gines Abellana said he will not step down even as councilwoman Anne Marie Vestil Palomo has been appointed as acting barangay captain in his place.

According to Abellana, the suspension order of the Cebu City Council doesn’t have any effect and it is only the Department of the Interior and Local Government that has the authority to suspend officials.

“Unsa man diay? I cannot run away from my people. Wala man ko nagsilbi para kaniya (Palomo), nagsilbi ko sa mga tawo, bahala na’g unsa’y mahitabo even if it will cost my life, it’s okay. Basta I did it to defend my people,” Abellana said.

Last Tuesday the city council suspended Abellana for 24 months over allegedly not releasing the honoraria of Palomo and other three barangay councilors from July to December 2018.

The suspension came after Palomo, Edwil Managbanag, Victoriano Laborte, and Neonita Cuestas filed a complaint against Abellana for abuse of authority.

Palomo is the number one barangay councilwoman. Under the law, if the barangay captain is suspended or becomes unable to serve, the first elected councilor will replace him or her.

Last Wednesday afternoon, the City Council handed the suspension order to Abellana. Palomo, the three barangay officials were given copies also.

Abellana sought the legal opinion of DILG-Cebu City to know the legality of Palomo’s assumption of office yesterday after he learned that Palomo took her oath before Mayor Tomas Osmeña to sit as the acting barangay captain.

Abellana said he will leave his post once DILG will order him to do so, but if not, he will continue serving the people as the elected barangay captain of Mambaling.

“O, og moingon sila nga siya g’yud, wala’y problema. Unsa man ang akong mahimo? Pero og mo-ingon nga maghuwat ta sa opinion sa DILG kay this is a matter of DILG, nga DILG ra ang mo-implement, they cannot go against it,” he said.

In a separate interview, Palomo said she will perform her duties and responsibilities as the acting barangay captain so as not to hamper the delivery of basic services to the constituents.

In fact, she plans to ask the city government to lend them a garbage truck from the Department of Public Services for their daily garbage collection.

“Yes, para wala’y vacuum and dili ma-hamper ang basic services. Renewal of permits this month. The suspended barangay captain can no longer sign or he will usurp my function,” Palomo said.

At the press conference, Osmeña said there will be a P22-million road concreting project in Alaska, Mambaling, which will be implemented this year.

He announced this after Palomo was appointed to replace Abellana. Palomo is an ally of Bando Osmeña Pundok Kauswagan.

“Anyway, I am very happy to announce that in Mambaling, we have a project to concrete the roads at Alaska,” Osmeña said. (FREEMAN)

GINES ABELLANA
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