By Dominique Gabriel G. Bañaga
Former Executive Assistant to the Mayor Sarah Esguerra has filed a new criminal complaint against Bacolod City Mayor Evelio Leonardia, this time alleging the failure of the local chief executive to dismiss the late City Legal Office (CLO) head Atty. Allan Zamora in 2006.
In an August 13, 2017 affidavit filed before the Office of the Ombudsman in the Visayas, Esguerra alleged that Leonardia failed to dismiss Zamora from office despite a resolution from the Civil Service Commission (CSC) dated July 18, 2006 invalidating the appointment of Zamora.
Zamora’s dismissal was based on allegations that he misrepresented his personal data sheet as to his actual residency. The Ombudsman also released a resolution on June 25, 2007, stating there was probable cause for the filing of a perjury case against Zamora.
Esguerra claimed that with Leonardia’s defiance over the CSC’s ruling, the city has released unauthorized disbursements for the salaries of Zamora.
The Ombudsman also released an order to Leonardia to file his counter-affidavit and other evidences within 10 days after receiving the copy of the complaint.
Meanwhile, Atty. Joselito Bayatan, CLO head and Leonardia’s legal counsel, said the same complaint involving the same circumstances and fact was converted by Esguerra into a criminal complaint.
“As we had earlier said, former Mayor Monico Puentevella has lost respect for our Filipino norms and traditions of preserving the honor of the deceased, like Atty. Zamora,” he explained.
Bayatan said they are “awfully stunned” by Puentevella’s unscrupulous manner of expressing his desperation of really running after the mayor to the extent of even betraying his closest ally who ran for a congressional seat in the 2016 election with him by filing a criminal complaint against him over a case of reimbursement.
“We are always ready to meet these baseless complaints,” Bayatan said.
He added that Leonardia is undaunted by these dirty tactics of Puentevella’s camp./WDJ