Former Davao del Sur town mayor charged with usurpation of powers
Former Matanao Mayor Vicente Araneta Fernandez of Davao del Sur was formally charged with usurpation of powers when he issued memoranda and ordinances in January 2015 even though he was detained for murder.
In the charge sheet, the Office of the Special Prosecutor accused Fernandez of willfully, unlawfully and feloniously performing acts or functions without being lawfully entitled to do so and under pretense of official position.
The prosecution said he issued memoranda, ordinances, and signed business permits, various checks and other disbursements under the pretense that he had the authority to do so as mayor when he was under detention and legally incapacitated to perform his functions.
The prosecution pointed out that at the time of his detention, Vice Mayor Elmer Javelona was acting mayor and the one entitled to do such acts under Section 46(a) of the Republic Act No. 7160 or the Local Government Code.
The prosecution accused Fernandez usurping the functions and authority of Javelona in violation of Article 177, paragraph 2 of the Revised Penal Code.
Fernandez was then detained for the 2010 killing of journalist Nestor Bedolido. He had been ordered arrested with former Gov. Douglas Cagas.
Confessed gunman Voltaire Mirafuentes had implicated Fernandez, who supposedlyplanned the Bedolido slaying, while Cagas allegedly ordered to kill the journalist.
Cagas and Fernandez were recently allowed to post bail and the governor was reelected in the last 2016 elections./rga
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