LINGAYEN, Pangasinan – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) Pangasinan provincial office is yet to implement the suspension of the six village chiefs in the province as they wait for the formal order from the Ombudsman.
The village chiefs are facing charges of alleged anomalies and irregularities on the distribution of the social amelioration program (SAP) of the national government.
“We so far have the verbal communication and we haven’t received yet the formal order from the Office of the Ombudsman and from the DILG head office through our regional office,” DILG-Pangasinan provincial director Paulino Lalata Jr. said in an interview on Tuesday.
Among the barangay officials who will face a six-month preventive suspension are Ariel Hiquiana of Barangay San Vicente in San Jacinto town; Walter Velasco of Barangay Cablong in Sta. Barbara town; Angel Oria Sombrito of Barangay Calanutan in Rosales town; Lawrence Gilbert delos Angeles of Barangay Balogo; Froilando Fernandez of Barangay Gayaman and Rogelio Fernandez of Barangay Caloocan Norte, both from Binmaley town.
He said serious dishonesty, grave misconduct, abuse of authority, and conduct prejudicial to the best interest of the service are some of the complaints faced by the village chiefs.
Lalata said the officials may still continue with their duties while waiting for the implementation of the order.
“If they will be found guilty, some of the possible punishments are reprimand, suspension, or termination from the service,” he said, adding the decision on their benefits being received as elected officials will depend on the verdict on the charges against them.
Lalata said while the suspension order is in effect against the barangay chairman, the first village councilor will automatically assume the post in their respective barangays.
Meanwhile, another set of mass suspension against the barangay officials because of the SAP anomalies is expected to be released soon, he said.
However, Lalata said they have not been receiving any complaints yet regarding the distribution of SAP’s second tranche.
“We encourage the public to report anomalies and irregularities about the distribution of SAP through the concerned government agencies for proper investigation and filing of cases,” he added.
Lalata said the recent suspension order of the Ombudsman against some barangay officials will serve as a warning to other government officials. Jerick James Pasiliao / PNA – northboundasia.com