The Office of the President has reduced Narra mayor Gerandy Danao’s 20-month suspension slapped on him by the Provincial Board’s adjudication body arising from a string of administrative cases, indicating that the embattled mayor can return to his office at the latest by November this year.
The ruling, signed by Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea, upheld an earlier conviction slapped on him by the Sangguniang Panlalawigan on September 2. The palace ruling however acquitted Danao on one of the charges, the one that pertains to his issuance of special cockfighting permits.
“Appelant Danao is not guilty of grave misconduct for issuing special permits for special cockfights,” the ruling stated, as it called for the reduction of the latter’s suspension.
The partial granting of Danao’s appeal reduced his original suspension of 20 months to 14 months.
Danao’s spokesperson Jojo Gastanes told Palawan News on Thursday that the mayor and his legal team are thankful for the ruling, but are discussing whether to appeal Danao’s other pending administrative cases.
“Ang decision na partially granted, pinawalang-sala siya ng Office of the President doon sa kanyang pag-issue ng permit sa mga pasabong. Ayon sa Office of the President, mayroong authority ang mayor base doon sa ordinance na ginawa rin ng Sangguniang Bayan,” he said.
“Sa decision na ‘yan, masaya naman kami. Kahit papaano, panalo si Mayor Danao on that aspect,” he added.
Danao is currently serving his suspension after the Provincial Board pronounced him guilty for a number of administrative offences: a.) Grave Misconduct and Violation of Section 3 (e) and (j) Republic Act No. 3019 on two counts with the corresponding penalty of suspension for six months on each count, or a total of 12 months; b.) Gross Negligence with the corresponding penalty of suspension for six (6) months; and c.) Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of Service with the corresponding penalty of suspension for two months.
Narra’s current chief executive is vice mayor Crispin Lumba Jr., while Provincial Board member and Narra first councilor Clarito Demaala IV is the acting vice mayor. Both were participants in the events leading to Danao’s suspension granted by the Palawan Provincial Board.
Danao has decried filing of the cases against him as political harassment.