Cebu News

‘Plaints dismissed’: I am not guilty - Chan

Mitchelle L. Palaubsanon - The Freeman

CEBU, Philippines — Lapu-Lapu City Mayor Junard “Ahong” Chan has denied being found guilty of criminal and administrative complaints lodged against him by daycare workers before the Office of the Ombudsman, saying they were already dismissed.

“Wala pa ma-serve ang suspension order, na-dismissed na na. Mao na nga wala ko na suspenso. Wala gani ko nakadawat og official order sa Ombudsman,” Chan said.

The Freeman got hold of an Office of the Ombudsman Dec. 1, 2023, “Order of Implementation” signed by Assistant Ombudsman Pilarita Lapitan that stated that a Sept. 5, 2023 decision found Chan and Junard Abalos “guilty of abuse of authority/oppression” and was punished with a “penalty of suspension from Office without pay for six months and one day”.

Abalos is Lapu-Lapu City’s Social Welfare and Development Office officer-in-charge.

Chan said the Ombudsman decision stemmed from the complaint of daycare workers who complained against the City Government after they were not paid with their salaries for three months over alleged offenses like tardiness.

The complaint against the daycare workers was made sometime in December 021.

However, on March 2022, upon investigation by the City Legal Office, it was found out that the complaint against them were unfounded, which was why the day care workers were later given their backpay.

“So, ang nahitabo ani, ni-file na sila og complaint sa Ombudman, pero while ongoing ang criminal complaint, nabayran na man sila sa ilang honorarium. They already executed an affidavit of desistance,” Chan said.

He said that when the decision on the criminal complaint was handed down by the Ombudsman, they said filed a motion for reconsideration, arguing that the day care workers were already paid.

Chan said that they also included in the same motion the administrative aspect of the case, explaining that the complainants were already paid.

He said that while the Ombudsman received the complaint in June 2022, the daycare workers were paid already on May 2022.

He said the criminal and administrative cases were dismissed, which was why he was not suspended.

He, however, failed to furnish The Freeman a copy of the dismissal orders, as of press time.

The daycare workers were allegedly supporters of former mayor Paz Radaza, who ran against but lost to Chan in the May 2022 elections. — /RHM (FREEMAN)

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