normal_post - Mayor Dan Lim and Councilor Mariquit Derikito-Oppus on "state of war" - Talk of the Town Author Topic: Mayor Dan Lim and Councilor Mariquit Derikito-Oppus on "state of war"  (Read 517 times)

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Any city official or employee who would refuse to cooperate in a Sangguniang Panlungsod inquiry can be held for contempt, be fined and jailed.

The 2007 Revised Code of Administrative Ordinances of the City of Tagbilaran stipulates provision in dealing with those who may snub a legislative fact-finding, hearing or investigation intended to provide transparency of governance, according to Councilor Mariquit Derikito-Oppus.

Mayor Dan Lim and Oppus, chair of the committee on public accountability and investigations, recently locked horns when the chief executive junked her request for the appearance of two department heads to her committee.

The legislature, which also has an oversight function, would have simply wanted to know how city hall's pro-poor health and hospitalization program called Blue Card has been accomplished or its enabling ordinance executed.

Rule VI, Section 68 (p) of the Code says that in the "failure of any witness to appear in its hearing/meeting, or failure of any person to present /produce documents, papers or records," Oppus' committee can ask the court "to declare such person in direct contempt and to suffer penalties of a fine of not more than three thousand pesos (P3,000) or imprisonment of not more than one month, or both at the discretion of the court."

The public accountability and investigations committee will fully exercise its mandate now that the Blue Card fund itself is involved in the alleged padding of hospital bills.

This most serious expose ever to involve the Blue Card was yet unknown when the mayor then barred concerned department heads to appear in the legislative body on earlier Blue Card concerns.

Lim even declared in his letter to Oppus that the "Sangguniang Panlungsod is not an internal audit department."

--The Bohol Chronicle

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