Mayor Rama hopes for justice amid 6 months preventive suspension order

Mayor Rama hopes for justice amid 6 months preventive suspension order

JUST 4 weeks after Malacañang suspended an official in Davao del Norte, the Mayor of Cebu City Mike Rama faced a similar fate from the Philippines’ constitutional body.

‘‘I don’t understand, MJ, why the preventive suspension issue on salary is becoming a wholesale. I’m not even a payroll maker,’’ Mayor Michael ‘Mike’ Rama, Cebu City, stated.

In an interview with SMNI, Wednesday, May 8th, Cebu City Mayor ‘Mike’ Rama clarified that he has not yet received the copy of the 6 months preventive suspension order issued to him by the Office of the Ombudsman.

The mayor added that he has not yet been given an opportunity to provide an explanation or at least have the complaint against him and seven other officials investigated, though this has already been publicly announced.

The suspension is in relation to the administrative cases he is facing due to an alleged illegal reassignment and withholding of salaries of 4 city hall employees.

But for Rama, he says there is injustice here because he was not even directly involved in the said complaint.

‘‘You know, I also make decisions being a voluntary arbitrator. You know, I, being a personnel manager, you can’t just be issuing preventive suspensions. That preventive suspension on labor, if you are the one directly involved. I’m not even directly involved. Why am I being preventively suspended? If there’s one, why did it reach to me? What’s really… should my head directly be in jeopardy?’’ Mayor Rama said.

The mayor also clarified that he confronted the city administrator when he learned about the said complaint.

‘‘Per my instruction, upon learning of what has been happening, I confronted my city administrator, and also, I wanted them to speak out as the same time. But they will be given also the opportunity to air their side.”

I heard, they’ve already been paid and the succeeding months are still being processed. There are reasons. I do not want to be a spokesperson on what is happening in the lower ranks because a mayor is higher up; the others are in lower ranks. That’s why, me as a mayor, I cannot be leaving them behind. No matter what happens, we’re together,’’ according to Mayor Rama.

Mayor Mike Rama, who is also a lawyer, is a known ally of former President Rodrigo Roa Duterte. And just like Davao del Norte Governor Edwin Jubahib, he was also subjected to a preventive suspension that lasts 60 days for Jubahib.

For Rama, the complaint’s progress seems suspicious compared to the case he filed against Cebu Governor Gwen Garcia back in March for alleged abuse of authority – before the complaints against him were filed.

In the end, Mayor Rama says he just wants to get justice.

‘‘I do not want to cast aspersion if I’m included. All I want, I want justice while I am alive.’’

‘‘The show must go on. Life has to be spent by. And most of all, just don’t surrender.’’

‘’No surrender, no retreat. leave no one behind,’’ he added.

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