Supreme Court urged to revisit ruling on removal of gov't executives | Inquirer News
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Supreme Court urged to revisit ruling on removal of gov’t executives

/ 12:29 PM May 12, 2021
The Supreme Court building in Ermita, Manila.

The Supreme Court building in Ermita, Manila. INQUIRER file photo / EDWIN BACASMAS

MANILA, Philippines — An official of the Dangerous Drugs Board (DDB) prodded the Supreme Court to reexamine a decision of its first division that she said could affect thousands of government executives.

DDB Deputy Executive Director for Operation Maria Belen Angelita Matibag was removed from her post in 2011 following a memorandum circular ordering the removal of non-Career Executive Service Officials occupying Career Executive Service (CES) positions.

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Matibag took her case to the Civil Service Commission (CSC), which later on ruled that she was illegally dismissed. DDB then took the case to the Court of Appeals, which sustained the CSC’s ruling  in her favor.

Ruling on appeal, however, the SC’s First Division reversed the CA’s decision saying Matibag failed to comply with the Career Executive Service Board (CESB) resolution which provides for the completion of two additional stages before one is considered with the rank of Career Executive Service Officer  (CESO).

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This is contrary to the CA’s finding that CSC, being the central personnel agency of the government mandated to establish a career service, is empowered by laws to issue and enforce rules and regulations to carry out its mandate and determine the appropriate eligibilities in the Career Service including third level positions.

Matibag, through the Public Attorneys’ Office, filed an Omnibus Motion to refer the matter to the Supreme Court en ban for oral argument and consideration. She also sought the inhibition of Associate Justice Alfredo Benjamin Caguioa, the author of the January 2020 ruling of the SC’s First Division.

She claimed Caguioa served as chief presidential legal counsel (CPLC) under the Aquino administration and helped craft the memorandum circular which caused her removal from her position.

The Omnibus motion, however, was denied thus another motion was filed last Monday.

In her latest motion, she reiterated the importance of elevating the case for consideration by the 15 magistrates “as it involves the constitutionality and validity of an executive order.”

The motion added that the decision could also affect other similarly situated government executives

“Clearly, not only Respondent but thousands of other CEO, CES, and CSE eligibles who are already appointed in third level executive positions on permanent status will be ceremoniously stripped of their permanent status and deprived of their living. This, notwithstanding that CSC already earlier clarified that these officials were automatically conferred the rank of CEO VI,” read the motion.

It also reiterated the call for Caguioa to inhibit from the case.

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TAGS: CESO, Civil Service Commission, CSC, eligibility, Supreme Court
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