I slap, I squat, we rule (it is not your fiefdom, it is our country)

We all have to remember that in a democracy, we still adhere to the rule of law and the mandate given by the people; or emanating from the people.

There is the Constitution which was enshrined through the people’s mandate. There is the highest elective officer in the land, elected by all registered voters (flying, dead, resurrected, legal or otherwise) from all over the country, and even abroad. There are the two other branches of government, with powers and authority again coming from the people’s mandate.

But we can refrain from talking about governance and the Constitution to make this discussion simpler and easier.

We can limit our discussion using the context of a “boss-employee” relationship. If the employee commits something irregular, the boss has the right to discipline the employee using all legal and allowable remedies.

If an employee commits something wrong, the boss cannot just slap the employee in private or in public.

If an employee feels he or she is being discriminated against by his or her boss, the employee cannot just hole-up, bunker-in or squat in the office and wait for “doomsday” or for public opinion to just save the day. The employee can avail of all legal and allowable remedies.

Sadly, but true, an employee cannot just issue a memo defying his boss. Life is not fair, I know.

leadership

For a very few local officials in the land, they seem to forget the difference between the meaning and intent of “decentralization” and “autonomy”. Because there is decentralization, but not autonomy. They seem to forget that they are still in a “boss-employee” relationship and this selection process of the “boss” is through the people’s mandate [e.g. the Constitution, the national laws that explain and interpret the Constitution, and the national government].

For a very few local officials, they hide behind the cloak of the local government code and misappropriate their powers and authority with the tendency and temptation to interpret their city or municipality as their fiefdom.

The Local Government Code of 1991 says it clearly, [Section 2] “…it is the policy of the State to ensure the accountability of local government units…” and [Section 25] “…the President shall exercise general supervision over local government units to ensure that their acts are within the scope of their prescribed powers and functions.”

Yes, Virginia, an elected local official can still be suspended on the following grounds, [Section 60] (a) Disloyalty to the Republic of the Philippines; (b) Culpable violation of the Constitution;(c) Dishonesty, oppression, misconduct in office, gross negligence, or dereliction of duty; (d) Commission of any offense involving moral turpitude or an offense punishable by at least prison mayor; (e) Abuse of authority; (f) Unauthorized absence for fifteen (15) consecutive working days; (g) Application for, or acquisition of, foreign citizenship or residence or the status of an immigrant of another country; and (h) Such other grounds as may be provided in this Code and other laws…”

A local government cannot come up with laws or rules that defy the Constitution. The Department of Interior and Local Government said, [Memorandum Circular No. 2012-181] “…the power of local government units to pass ordinances and resolutions is merely a delegated power coming from Congress and ordinances should not contravene an existing statute enacted by Congress.”

The mandate of the interior department comes from the Constitution. The interior department secretary is an “alter ego” of the President and the mandate of the President comes from the people, well at least until 2016.

But we all know these – as these are simple logic and common sense. There is no one above the law; there has to be a system of accountability.

If a case is filed against you, even if you are an elected official, you have to respond and defend yourself. Not hole-up, bunker-in, or squat in an office which, temporarily, for a short period of time no longer belongs to you.

You just don’t slap a person because that person has defied your order or “request”.

You cannot just come up with a law and implement it in your own back-yard and pretend you are disengaged from the rest of the country that follows a law different from your own.

Because if you think that way; it just doesn’t make sense.

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About The Miner

I am working with a large-scale mining company that adheres to responsible mining and sustainable development principles.

Post Author: The Miner

I am working with a large-scale mining company that adheres to responsible mining and sustainable development principles.

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8 Comments on "I slap, I squat, we rule (it is not your fiefdom, it is our country)"

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Matthew Parkes
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Let’s look at how Aquino himself fares against this list of possible grounds for being suspended: (a) Disloyalty to the Republic of the Philippines; He does this on a daily basis wearing his yellow ribbon rather than a symbol of the Philippines. Further, his so-called peace process in Mindanao involves high treason, not to mention his aiding and abetting the treason of Trillanes in China. (b) Culpable violation of the Constitution; Oh yeah. Corona’s impeachment was definitely a culpable violation of the Constitution. (c) Dishonesty, oppression, misconduct in office, gross negligence, or dereliction of duty; So many things here. Let’s… Read more »
Trosp
Guest

ROTFL…

Where is the “like” button?

Thomas Jefferson
Guest

Is ours a government of the dictator, by the dictator and for the dictator? Jesuit Fr. J. Bernas called him (BS Aquino) a dictator, Senator Joker Arroyo called him an autocrat, members of the Philippine Bar called him a dictator, members of the bench called him a dictator and members of the press called him a dictator. BS style has been called a creeping dictatorship. I observed his style as a very subtle dictatorship without even firing a shot or declaring martial law.

Thomas Jefferson
Guest

The impunity of the dark powers in imposing arbitrary censorship on media units in Cebu speaks for itself. Please see the Manila Standard link below:

http://www.manilastandardtoday.com/2012/12/24/magpale-hit-for-closing-media-units/

T4Man
Guest

“The Local Government Code of 1991 says it clearly, [Section 2] “…it is the policy of the State to ensure the accountability of local government units…” and [Section 25] “…the President shall exercise general supervision over local government units to ensure that their acts are within the scope of their prescribed powers and functions.”

Gag, choke….if only…
Isn’t it interesting how this is enforced “sometimes”.
I was a “boss” for quite some time so I understand the importance of CONSISTENCY. If you want to be taken seriously you cannot “pick and choose” when you enforce the law and when you don’t.

Domingo Arong
Guest
The Miner Take note that, unlike the previous Constitutions of the Republic, the term of office of elective local officials is now fixed at “three years,” as provided in Section 8, Article X. And like the President, local officials are similarly elected by virtually the same “boss” – the qualified electors of their respective government units, or at large in the case of the President. Note further, however, that any “preventive suspension” imposed upon an elective local official virtually SHORTENS the length of time that the official was elected by the “boss”(the qualified electors) to serve, depending on the duration… Read more »
ChinoF
Member

Nothing new with a regime that believes getting opposition out of the way is “political will.” They’re doing it wrong.

BlueStreak
Guest

Both sides are doing the same deed anyway. I will hardly believe that no politician ever circumvented the laws of our Constitution.

Someone I know can safely concluded that this country only works if a DICTATORSHIP is in place as long as it is a “benevolent” one.

The easiest solution that I know is to get out of the country and just do what you can to “help a few”. By the way, the article completely makes sense whether you hate or love our President and the ruling party in Malcañang.