PUERTO PRINCESA CITY - The Office of the Solicitor General (OSG) believes there is no substantial evidence to hold dismissed Puerto Princesa Mayor Lucilo Bayron liable for serious dishonesty and grave misconduct.
Solicitor Generaly Jose Calida said this in a manifestation and motion in support of Bayron's plea before the Court of Appeals, which sought to invalidate the Office of the Ombudsman's dismissal order against him.
The Ombudsman had in January ordered Bayron dismissed along with his son, Bantay Puerto-VIP Security Task Force project manager Karl Bayron, for serious dishonesty and grave misconduct after failing to declare their biological relationship.
In his manifestation, Calida said the Bayrons had no conscious or malevolent intent to hide their blood ties even while they had signed a Contract of Service. It noted that the younger Bayron's data sheet, which was attached to his contract as Bantay Puerto security task force project manager, stated that the Mayor-elect was his father.
As Bantay Puerto-VIP Security Task Force project manager, the younger Bayron acts as security chief for his father. The engagement was for a confidential position, which is purportedly exempt from the rule on nepotism under Section 59 of the Administrative Code of 1987.
The OSG also noted that Bayron could not have been expected to review each contract document he signed, as he had to affix his signature on 303 contracts of service on July 1, 2013, each of which had 12 documents.
The Bayrons' camp was elated about the OSG manifestation, expressing confidence that the appellate court would rule in their favor.
The Ombudsman had found the Bayrons guilty of serious dishonesty and grave misconduct Dec. 15, 2016 stemming from the younger Bayron's contract as security chief.
The Bayrons filed a motion for reconsideration at the Ombudsman on Feb. 1 this year but learned the next day that there was an immediate order for their dismissal.
This prompted Bayron's camp to immediately proceed to the Court of Appeals on Feb. 3 to file a temporary restraining order.
The Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) served the dismissal order on Feb. 10.
Vice Mayor Luis Marcaida III took oath as the new Mayor of Puerto Princesa City on Feb. 21.