Mayor Brian Lim’s blame game

By January 16, 2022Random Thoughts

By Leonardo Micua


IF Dagupan City is still without a new budget, Mayor Brian Lim has no one to blame but himself and his staff for taking their sweet time first in completing all the requirements needed to have the annual city budget approved.

Neither can he put the blame on the Sangguniang Panlungsod that waited for his staff  on December 31, 2021, only to submit the Indicative Procurement Plan 15 minutes before the close of office hours.

Did Mr. Lim expect the SP to just close its eyes and approve the IPP without exercising its power to scrutinize the  same.?

Submission of the IPP and other components of the Annual Investment Plan (AIP) are mandated by the Department of Budget and Management, not by the SP. The city’s Bids and Awards Committee was in charge of preparing this document.

The submission of the IPP was already four months late because according to DBM’s memorandum circular, that document should be in the hands of the legislative body on or before August 31, 2021 to give the latter enough time to review it.

Then the Capacity Development Agenda for SP’s  review before it can finally proceed to approve the city’s annual budget was not submitted as well. Majority Floor Leader Mike Fernandez said the CapDev Agenda is another mandated  requirement of DBM that cannot just be set aside.

The problem is, everyone in Mr. Brian’s cabinet did not seem to understand what a CapDev agenda is. Even members of the city’s finance committee were conspicuously silent when SP asked about this document in their last session Tuesday. The body still had to pass a resolution requesting Mayor Lim to submit the document.

It seems the four so-called deputy mayors at the  city hall and a retinue of other high-paying officials were not of any help  to Mr. Lim. They didn’t help provide all the necessary documents to form a good working budget.

The situation at the city hall seemed to have gotten messy since City Administrator Vladimir Mata resigned for an executive position at the Commission on Appointments in the Senate. It was Mata, a former city councilor, who secured the early passage of last year’s annual city budget that prevented a re-enacted budget.

As a former councilor, Mata knew what a good executive budget should contain and he provided it with relative ease.

On Lim’s call to the SP “to stop playing politics,” Councilor Jose Netu Tamayo reacted sharply: We are working  apolitical and  for the interest of the people”. The veteran Councilor Chito Samson added: “Last year when we were passing the budget, we  required documents from the executive. They said this will follow. We passed the budget. But no document ever came. They  are doing the same trick now.”

*          *          *          *

The news that first saw print in the newspaper Manila Times before it was picked up by columnists and radio commentators is hard to ignore lest we are accused of consorting in having it suppressed, knowing that central to the story is our kabaleyan.

It was about the complaint of rape of a 17-year-old former maid filed before the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon against Secretary Raul Lambino, chief of the Cagayan Economic Zone Authority and President Duterte’s political adviser for Northern Luzon; and for a case of maltreatment against Mrs. Marilyn Lambino, mayor of Mangaldan.

Philippine Star columnist Ramon Tulfo discussed this twice in his column “Sentinel” and again in his second column, he suggested that Secretary Lambino be suspended from the cabinet because the accusations hurled against him are serious and disturbing.

According to Mr. Tulfo, Secretary Lambino personally asked Executive Secretary Salvador Medialdea and   Justice  Secretary Menando  Guevarra to have himself and his wife investigated but offhand reportedly denied ever knowing the victim and her mother.

In his radio program “Lapid Fire”, which was uploaded on You Tube on January 11, commentator Percy Lapid called on lawyer associations to provide legal assistance and protection to the daughter and mother.

Over at Bombo Radyo Dagupan, Celso Manuel, chief of staff of Lambino, cited a statement from Richie Abalos, former Liga ng Barangay president of Mangaldan that on January 3, 2019, that he was playing golf with Raul at Camp John Hay in Baguio City when the reported first rape incident happened in the home of the Lambinos in Quezon City.

We give Secretary Lambino and his wife, Marilyn the benefit of the doubt and hope and pray that they can hurdle this difficult legal challenge confronting them.

Share your Comments or Reactions


Powered by Facebook Comments