Dimiao mayor suspended over wife’s business interests

Dimiao Mayor Danilo Guivencan has been suspended by the Ombudsman for failing to include his wife’s business interests and financial connections in his Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN), becoming the fourth Bohol chief executive to either be dismissed or suspended in a span of 10 months.

In a statement issued Thursday, the Ombudsman said that Guivencan will be suspended for one month and one day for simple neglect of duty.

Investigation showed that business interests and financial connections of Guivencan’s wife were not stated in his SALNs from 2010 to 2012.

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In his counter-affidavit, Guivencan claimed that he failed to pay attention to the details of his SALNs that were prepared by his office staff and further claimed that the business interests were already declared in his 2013 SALN.

The Ombudsman however considered the failure to declare the business interests in previous SALNs as neglect.

“Respondent’s reliance on his personnel to fill out his SALN and signing the same without checking or verifying the completeness of the entries therein is a clear display of carelessness and failure to give proper attention to the task imposed by law,” the Ombudsman said in its decision.

Section 8 of the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees requires all government employees to complete a statement under oath showing their assets, liabilities and net worth and financial and business interests annually.

The law stipulates that the declaration should include financial data and business interests of their spouses and unmarried children under 18 years of age who are living in their households.

In the past 10 months, the Ombudsman has ordered the suspension of Anda Mayor Angelina Simacio and the dismissal of the mayors of Panglao and Pilar, Leonila Montero and Necitas Cubrado, respectively.

The Ombudsman indicted Simacio for supposed violation against the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act in connection to an alleged overpriced construction of a multi-purpose center which she initiated.

In a related administrative case filed against her, Simacio was ordered suspended for three months after she was found guilty of simple neglect of duty in February this year.

In August, 2017, Cubrado was found guilty of grave misconduct and was ordered dismissed by the Ombudsman for exempting several residents from paying power connection charges without the approval of the municipal council.

Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales ordered Panglao, Bohol Mayor Leonila Montero dismissed after finding her guilty of grave misconduct.

Montero was initially found guilty of simple misconduct in December, 2017 for appointing party allies who lost in the 2013 elections to positions in the Panglao municipal government.

Morales however upgraded the penalty to dismissal in February this year after finding Montero guilty of grave misconduct for the same allegation. (R. Tutas)



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