Rama takes a break; Labella, others comply with order

By: Jhunnex Napallacan, Jose Santino S. Bunachita May 17,2016 - 11:11 PM
Reelected Cebu City Vice Mayor Edgardo Labella smiles and waves to supporters as he boards a vehicle after learning of his suspension order. (CDN PHOTO/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

Reelected Cebu City Vice Mayor Edgardo Labella smiles and waves to supporters as he boards a vehicle after learning of his suspension order. (CDN PHOTO/JUNJIE MENDOZA)

OUTGOING Cebu City Mayor Michael Rama said his lawyers will focus on his election protest while he takes a rest after months of campaigning for reelection.

“As I had said, what else is new? That is always their grand design a long time ago which is to cut my neck. That’s how consumed they are and so they accomplished their mission. Congratulations to them,” he said in a phone interview.

The mayor said he was not in Cebu and he didn’t see the document.

He said he was in southern Cebu yesterday and will return to the city tomorrow morning.

“Maybe complying with the order would be best for the meantime,” Rama said.

Asked if he has a message to acting Mayor Margot Osmeña, he said, “I have no message. God bless Cebu City.”

Rama said the election protest is being attended to by Vice Mayor Edgar Labella and his lawyers.

He said they met last Monday night and they were expecting “something positive” on the protest today.

Labella, who arrived at his office to see the documents of the suspension order posted on the door, said he will comply with the order and encouraged the other officials to do the same.

“We have to abide because like what the mayor has said, we always adhere to the rule of law but we have to question certain lapses, very serious flaws,” he said.

He said the memo of Malacañang directing the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) to enforce the suspension order was dated April 6 while the actual decision was dated April 7.

He said it was like “putting the cart before the horse.”

Labella said they will go back to the Court of Appeals, where they have a pending petition for certiorari on the calamity aid case and ask them to issue an injunction or a Temporary Restraining Order since they already have a copy of the decision now.

Labella said they are also looking at other cases, including criminal, to be filed in relation to the order but declined to elaborate.

Without entering his office and after reading the documents posted, Labella decided to leave.

Labella said he called a friend to fetch him using a black private car. He said he will not use city-issued vehicles anymore.

Only Councilor Sisinio Andales was present to personally receive the order in his office yesterday. He said he’s happy and willing to comply with it.

“I have no problem with this. At least, I can have a vacation with my family and also focus on the cases I’m handling,” said Andales who is also a practicing lawyer.

Councilor Roberto Cabarrubias explained in a Facebook post why he was among those suspended. He said he is still thankful that he was able to serve the city for three terms.

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TAGS: Cebu, Cebu City, Cebu City hall, Labella, Mike Rama, suspension order

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