Department of Interior and Local Government officials yesterday served a Sandiganbayan 90-day suspension order on the vice mayor and 12 other employees of Silay City.
Silay City Treasurer Elsie Jimenea’s suspension order will be served by the Department of Finance.
The 13 others issued 90-day suspension orders are Vice Mayor Joedith Gallego, City Accountant Emmanuel Arsenal, City Planning Officer Giovanni Guzon, City Engineer Roy Pahilanga, Pepito Hechanova Jr., Alma de la Cruz, Sonia Cordero, Jesus Oppus, Arnie Trajera, Jose Genaro Estraño, Armin Paredes, Alore Golez and Vilma Dooma, a memorandum issued by Negros Occidental DILG Director Carmelo Orbista said.
The suspensions stem from a criminal case filed against them, along with former Silay Mayor Jose Montelibano, for allegedly resorting to direct contracting instead of competitive bidding in awarding an P18 million city government computerization project to Systems and Plan Integrator Development Corp.
Most of those suspended were members of the city’s Bids and Awards Committee.
The Sandiganbayan, in its order, said “the accused are suspended from office pendente lite, and are hereby directed to cease and desist from performing and exercising the functions and duties, as well as receiving and or enjoying the salaries, benefits and privileged of their present public positions or any public office or positions they may now or be hereafter be holding for a period of 90 days from the date the suspension takes effect.”*CPG
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