By: Jomarie A Billones
ROXAS CITY, Capiz – The administrative case against a member of the Sanggunian Panlungsod (SP) here was dismissed for lack of jurisdiction.
The committees on good government under SP Member Gregory Albert Potato and ethics and discipline led by SP Member Midelo Ocampo jointly recommended the dismissal of the administrative complaint filed by a certain Ronaldo Fantilanan against SP member Jericho Angel Celino for being moot and academic and lack of jurisdiction.
In a joint committee report dated August 6, 2019, the committees said “a supervening event has already overtaken the complaint filed as the respondent Celino is no longer a barangay official but a co-equal member of the SP.”
“In such a case, a fellow member of the Sanggunian may only be disciplined by the Sanggunian through an ethics case or complaint filed by fellow member, and with a two third votes of all the Sanggunian concerned,” the report said.
The administrative case for misconduct was committed sometime in March 2015 and the complaint was filed before the Office of the Ombudsman in the Visayas on December 12, 2018.
The Ombudsman endorsed the complaint to the Roxas City SP on July 4, 2019 and was received by the SP Secretariat on July 25, 2019.
Celino was a former barangay captain of Brgy. San Jose here. He ran and won as SP member of Roxas City in the May 13, 2019 elections.
“It is apparent from the records, however, that both on the date of commission of the acts complained of and the date of filing of the complaint before the Ombudsman were all at the time when respondent was still a barangay captain thought the latter filed his candidacy as city councilor and was officially considered a candidate at the start of the campaign period. However, upon endorsement of this case by the Ombudsman, respondent is already a sitting Councilor having won the election and have taken his oath of office,” the joint committee report said.