- DILG is investigating mayors who were ‘absent’ during Typhoon Ompong
- A DILG official declined to name the mayors but said they are from Cagayan Valley and Cordillera regions
- These ‘erring mayors’ will be given 5 days to explain
MANILA, Philippines – More than a dozen mayors are under investigation for allegedly being ‘physically absent’ in their town or city at the height of Typhoon Ompong which claimed the lives of several people last week.
According to the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG), they are now looking into reports on around 16 mayors missing while ‘Ompong’ wreak havoc in Northern Luzon last September 15.
“We were surprised with the reports that the Central Office received on absentee mayors whose local government units are part of the critical areas along typhoon Ompong’s track,” said DILG Undersecretary Bernardo Florece.
Florece declined to identify the mayors but said they are from the Cagayan Valley and Cordillera Administrative Region (CAR).
He added that these local chief executives (LCEs) could face suspension or dismissal from service if proven they were indeed absent in their area where they are expected to be on top of the situation during calamities.
“The department doesn’t want trial by publicity so the actual names of erring mayors will be released after the investigation is complete,” said the DILG official.
Florece also said these ‘erring mayors’ will be given 5 days to explain and justify in writing why no disciplinary action should be taken against them.
“We will determine if their reasons are justifiable. If not, we will file complaints before Sangguniang Panlalawigan or the Ombudsman,” he said.