DILG to file raps vs Cebu City’s ex-mayor for taking away office fixtures
MANILA, Philippines — The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Friday it will file administrative cases against former Cebu City Mayor Tomas Osmeña for allegedly stripping his office of fixtures as he left the city hall after losing the election in May.
“Yesterday (Thursday), the Secretary said we will definitely file cases, but we will determine [which cases],” DILG Undersecretary and Spokesperson Jonathan Malaya said in a press briefing, referring to Interior Secretary Eduardo Año.
Osmeña, whose term ended on June 30, took all the fixtures in the Office of the City Mayor, including the ceiling and floor tiles, before turning it over to newly-elected Mayor Edgardo Labella.
He said he “had to spend for everything,” or about P2 million to renovate his office in 2010 since the city council, which was then headed by Labella, rejected his request for funds.
“I decided to remove everything so he (Labella) would know what it feels like,” Osmeña earlier said in a radio interview.
Malaya said DILG is only awaiting the report of its regional office in Central Visayas to identify what cases can be filed against Osmeña.
He also said Año had ordered the legal department of DILG to complete its investigation on the matter but said the agency had already decided to file cases even before the end of the probe because “obviously, something wrong happened.”
“I just want to relay that we are saddened by what happened that we decided to file legal cases against the mayor,” he said.
He likewise said Osmeña’s action was not a good example to other mayors.
“We are saddened and alarmed by this development. It does not serve as a good example to other local chief executives if they will do the same,” Malaya said.
He then explained that if it is true that the fixtures were brought through Osmeña’s own pocket, then the former mayor should have filed for reimbursement, which, according to Malaya, would have been “very easy” for him since he was the mayor. (Editor: Katherine G. Adraneda)
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