Ombudsman dismiss from service Sorsogon 2nd district board member Marnellie Robles | BICOL TODAY

Ombudsman dismiss from service Sorsogon 2nd district board member Marnellie Robles

By Felix ‘Boy’ Espineda, Jr.

SORSOGON CITY – The failure to act on complainants claim was done willfully and intentionally and the failure to inform complainant of the reason of her inaction, the Ombudsman finds Sorsogon Second District Board Member Marnellie Ballesteros Robles administratively liable for violation of RA 6713, the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees and for Gross Neglect of Duty meting the penalty of dismissal from service.

With the decision, Robles civil service eligibility is canceled, retirement benefits forfeited, bar to take civil service examination and disqualification from re-employment in the government service.

The dismissal of Robles was based on the complaint of former Bulan town Mayor Helen De Castro when she was refused by Robles, then the incumbent mayor, to receive her retirement benefits and its failure to notify the actions taken on the claim for justifiable reasons. The complaint was for gross misconduct which was dismissed, gross neglect of duty and for failure to act on letters and request.

De Castro cited the failure, in spite of formal demand to Robles for payment of her terminal leave benefits and the refusal and failure to act is damaging and prejudicial to her interest which the Ombudsman took notice.

In her defense, Robles denied the allegation saying that she did not act on the application due to the pending administrative and criminal complaint against De Castro, suspending any action pending the outcome of the investigation and acting on the claim may expose her to possible criminal and administrative complaint giving De Castro undue advantage.

The ruling, Ombudsman said that there is substantial evidence that respondent violated Section 5(a) of RA 6713 by failing to act on complainants letters requesting payment of her terminal leave pay after numerous follow-up, the last of which was the formal demand letter of February 2, 2015. For almost two years, Robles failed to act without justifiable reason.

There is also substantial evidence that former Bulan town mayor Robles committed “Gross Neglect of Duty” when it failed to act on the complainants claim for terminal leave pay. Clarifying, the Ombudsman said that “the pendency of the administrative case against complainant does not justify the respondent failure on the former’s claim for payment of terminal leave.” Saying further, that if there was a pending criminal case against the complainant, respondent is not justified in withholding the former terminal leave pay, because the penalty, in case of conviction, does not include forfeiture of such benefit.

It will be recalled that De Castro is facing a criminal complaint for violation of RA 3019 (Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act) on December 17, 2012 at the Ombudsman but it was only on November 12, 2017, that an information for violation of Section 3(e) of RA 3019was filed against her with the Sandiganbayan.  Records revealed that from August 30, 2013, to February 2, 2015, there was no existing criminal case filed against the complainant.

The decision was signed by Ombudsman Morales on June 20, 2018, and directed the Secretary of DILG to implement immediately the dismissal order upon receipt of the decision. []

Posted by on August 3, 2018. Filed under Bicol News,Headlines. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry

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