De Lima: Gutierrez deputy is officially dismissed

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Apr 19 2011 05:37 PM | Updated as of Apr 20 2011 03:09 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Justice Secretary Leila de Lima said on Tuesday that Deputy Ombudsman Emilio Gonzalez III is formally dismissed from office after failing to seek reconsideration of an Office of the President (OP) decision.

In a press conference, de Lima said Gonzalez only had 15 days to file for his appeal of the March 31 decision signed by Executive Secretary Paquito Ochoa.

Instead of filing the appeal, Gonzalez opted to file a petition with the Supreme Court that sought to halt the implementation of the order. The high court did not issue a status quo ante order, saying it has to wait for the OP’s comment.

The OP decision cited Gonzalez for gross neglect of duty and gross misconduct in handling the dismissal-complaint against police officer Rolando Mendoza, the hostage-taker in the Manila hostage crisis in August last year.

The hostage crisis spawned a national crisis that even affected the country’s diplomatic ties with Hong Kong and China.

“I think the decision should now be executory, since there is no TRO [Temporary Restraining Order]…I submit that the decision may now be executed,” de Lima stressed. -- with a report from Ina Reformina, ABS-CBN News