Puerto Princesa City – Mayor Luis Marcaida III has ordered his department heads not to heed legislative summons without first seeking clearance from his office, a move that sparked protests from city councilors.
In a memorandum issued June 13, 2017, Marcaida said appearances in the Council of all heads of executive offices should be cleared by the Office of the Mayor.
Councilors have protested the memorandum, warning that the move will further create disunity in the City government.
Councilor Jonjie Rodriguez said that throughout his 18 years in public service, he had never encountered such prohibition.
“For almost 18 years na ako ay nasa council na ito.. wala pang mayor na gumawa niyan,” Rodriguez said.
He said the measure will impede the work of the legislative.
“Mayor Marcaida has been a part of this council, nung panahon niya kung sino-sino rin naman ang pinapatawag niya. Walang gumagawa ng ganito,” Rodriguez said.
“I thought martial law is only in Marawi, hindi ko alam na dito rin pala sa City Hall martial law rin,” he added.
Councilor Nesario Awat questioned the legal basis of the memorandum.
“There should be checks and balances between the executive and the legislative,” Awat said.
Councilor Jimmy Carbonell claimed that the memo was intended to suppress the personnel involved in the Damayan Project which is being probed by the Council.
Councilor Henry Gadiano warned that Marcaida’s move will put a wedge between the executive and the legislative.
“Napaka-antipatipatikong kautusan sa mabuti at mabilis na pag-unlad, napaka-antipatiko,” he said.
Councilor Roy Ventura urged Marcaida to revoke the memorandum for “lack of legal basis.”