Suspended Ermita officials return to work
Jean Marvette A. Demecillo (The Freeman) - July 22, 2019 - 12:00am

CEBU, Philippines — Seven officials of Barangay Ermita in Cebu City will be reinstated today, Monday, after serving a one-year suspension over their alleged failure to cooperate in the anti-drug operation.

The six include barangay captain Mark Rizaldy Miral and councilmen Antonieto Flores, Ryan Jay Rosas, Alio Tamundo, Domingo Ando, Maria Buanghug, and Wilbert Flores.

The Ombudsman suspended the Ermita officials for grave neglect of duty for refusing to assist the Philippine Drug Enforcement Agency (PDEA) during an operation at the barangay on November 6, 2016.

Former PDEA-7 Director Yogi Filemon Ruiz had said none of the barangay officials at that time showed up at the crime scene when PDEA implemented a search warrant against Richard Cañete and Josephine Cuyno.

The barangay officials were supposed to witness the service of the warrant and the inventory of items seized. Miral said they will send communication to DILG-7 informing the agency that they have served their suspension.

He said they are happy that they are returning to the barangay with a mayor who is their ally.

“Dako sab kaayo akong kalipay sa among pagbalik kay karon ang among mayor na gyud ang nilingkod. Pasalamat kaayo ko sa kahitas-an nga gikan sa sinugdanan, gidungog niya ang akong pag-ampo (I’m very happy that we return with a mayor who’s our ally. We thank God for hearing our prayers since the beginning),” Miral told The FREEMAN.

He said a Holy Mass will be celebrated at 8 a.m. at the barangay gym today, which will be followed by an activity in line with nutrition month.

Miral said he is thankful to councilwoman Efe Rupinta, daughter of slain barangay captain Felicisimo Rumpinta, for taking the helm at the barangay since July 19, 2018.

He said leading the barangay was Rupinta’s “best and greatest contribution” to Ermita, considering that she is new to politics.

“Ang basic services, ato gyud ipadayon unya ang project for drainage sa sitio Bato, ato gyud i-push. Palig-onon ang peace and order kay naay ga-report, namalik ang mga snatcher diha sa Carbon (We will continue the basic services and the drainage project in sitio Bato. We will strengthen peace and order because we received information that snatchers have returned to the area),” he said. (FREEMAN)

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