Ombudsman to seek SC ruling on Junjun Binay’s suspension
MANILA, Philippines – Despite the appellate court’s decision putting on hold its suspension order against Makati City Mayor Jejomar Erwin “Junjun” Binay, the Office of the Ombudsman is not about to give up the fight to impose administrative penalties on the local official due to an allegedly overpriced building deal.
In a statement issued Monday night, the anti-graft body said it would bring the matter to the Supreme Court “as the final arbiter” of legal issues.
It said the high court “should, once and for all, settle the constitutional and legal issues” regarding questions over the appeals court authority to stop the Ombudsman from preventively suspending an elected public official “facing grave administrative charges.”
“The Ombudsman is unfazed by the CA resolution,” the Ombudsman said.
“Over and above the constitutional and legal issues, this is a matter involving the people’s desire to know the truth in cases involving corruption and public accountability,” it added.
It said Ombudsman Conchita Carpio-Morales “stands by her authority to place Mayor Binay under preventive suspension.”
“Such legal measure is intended to prevent a public official from using the vast powers of his office to tamper with evidence and harass witnesses in order to thwart the investigation of corruption charges,” the antigraft body said.
It added: “Without such authority, any corruption investigation conducted by the (Ombudsman) would be delayed and seriously obstructed.” SFM/AC
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