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Confidential positions in the LGUs

This is actually five months ago but for the sake of reiterating what’s confidential and what’s not in those positions being occupied by friends, relatives or shooting buddies perhaps of local chief executives, the Civil Service Commission issued its Resolution No. 1100187 dated February 1, 2011.

If there is anything urgent about the resolution, it’s all about the perennial clamor to make local governments rid of favored appointments of relatives, friends, political supporters and a host of whoever that’s close to the mayor or the governor. The propensity of such a habit is justified under CSC Resolution No. 071813 (MC No. 22 series of 2007) which declared certain positions in the Offices of the Provincial Governor/Vice Governor and Mayor/Vice Mayor as primarily confidential, ergo, untouchables.

So that in response to the clamor for CSC to review or amend its previous resolution (which only spawned patronage and abuses coming from both the appointing authority and the appointed), the Memo Circular No. 12 came to life. Here are some of the positions affected by the revised guidelines:

What’s confidential

  • Executive Assistants I,II,III,IV,V
  • Private Secretary I & II
  • Security Officer I,II,III,IV,V
  • Personal driver/Chauffeur

The above positions will retain the confidential nature of their jobs.

What’s not so confidential but needs re-appointment (and eligibility)

  •  Human Resource Management Officer
  • Records Officer
  • Supply Officer
  • Clerk
  • Utility Worker
  • Local Legislative Staff Employee

The above positions belong to the career service and not anymore primarily confidential, thus the reversion to their civil service classification. Essentially, all those under the title administrative officer, administrative assistants and those working in Sanggunian Panlalawigan/Panglungsod can be reappointed to the same positions if they are found qualified under existing Civil Service Law and rules. Bawal na tabi so mga kuray-kuray na suportadores na dae civil service eligibility.

What’s not so confidential, needs reappointment under new title and co-terminus

  • Administrative aide with parenthetical title (driver) to Driver (Governor/Vice-Governor/Mayor/Vice Mayor)
  • Administrative assistant with parenthetical title (secretary) to Private Secretary
  • Administrative officer to executive assistant

What’s said to be co-terminus (confidentiality on the part of the administrator is always debatable, please see the functions and look if there’s a matter of local and national security)

  • Administrator
  • Legal Officer
  • Information Officer

Provided that they have to conform to the following:

For the Administrator

Section 480. Qualifications, Terms, Powers and Duties.

(a) No person shall be appointed administrator unless he is a citizen of the Philippines, a resident of the local government unit concerned, of good moral character, a holder of a college degree preferably in public administration, law, or any other related course from a recognized college or university, and a first grade civil service eligible or its equivalent. He must have acquired experience in management and administration work for at least five (5) years in the case of the provincial or city administrator, and three (3) years in the case of the municipal administrator.

The term of administrator is coterminous with that of his appointing authority.

The appointment of an administrator shall be mandatory for the provincial and city governments, and optional for the municipal government.

(b) The administrator shall take charge of the office of the administrator and shall:

(1) Develop plans and strategies and upon approval thereof by the governor or mayor, as the case may be, implement the same particularly those which have to do with the management and administration related programs and projects which the governor or mayor is empowered to implement and which the sanggunian is empowered to provide for under this Code;

(2) In addition to the foregoing duties and functions, the administrator shall:

(i) Assist in the coordination of the work of all the officials of the local government unit, under the supervision, direction, and control of the governor or mayor, and for this purpose, he may convene the chiefs of offices and other officials of the local government unit;

(ii) Establish and maintain a sound personnel program for the local government unit designed to promote career development and uphold the merit principle in the local government service;

(iii) Conduct a continuing organizational development of the local government unit with the end in view of the instituting effective administrative reforms;

(3) Be in the frontline of the delivery of administrative support services, particularly those related to the situations during and in the aftermath of man-made and natural disasters and calamities;

(4) Recommend to the sanggunian and advise the governor and mayor, as the case may be, on all other matters relative to the management and administration of the local government unit; and

(5) Exercise such other powers and perform such other duties and functions as may be prescribed by law or by ordinance.

For the Legal Officer

Section 481. Qualifications, Terms, Powers and Duties.

(a) No person shall be appointed legal officer unless he is a citizen of the Philippines, a resident of the local government concerned, of good moral character, and a member of the Philippine Bar. He must have practiced his profession for at least five (5) years in the case of the provincial and city legal officer, and three (3) years in the case of the municipal legal officer.

The term of the legal officer shall be coterminous with that of his appointing authority.

The appointment of legal officer shall be mandatory for the provincial and city governments and optional for the municipal government.

(b) The legal officer, the chief legal counsel of the local government unit, shall take charge of the office of legal services and shall:

(1) Formulate measures for the consideration of the sanggunian and provide legal assistance and support to the governor or mayor, as the case may be, in carrying out the delivery of basic services and provisions of adequate facilities as provided for under Section 17 of this Code;

(2) Develop plans and strategies and upon approval thereof by the governor or mayor, as the case may be, implement the same, particularly those which have to do with programs and projects related to legal services which the governor or mayor is empowered to implement and which the sanggunian is empowered to provide for under this Code;

(3) In addition to the foregoing duties and functions, the legal officer shall:

(i) Represent the local government unit in all civil actions and special proceedings wherein the local government unit or any official thereof, in his official capacity, is a party: Provided, That, in actions or proceedings where a component city or municipality is a party adverse to the provincial government or to another component city or municipality, a special legal officer may be employed to represent the adverse party;

(ii) When required by the governor, mayor or sanggunian, draft ordinances, contracts, bonds,leases and other instruments, involving any interest of the local government unit and provide comments and recommendations on any instrument already drawn;

(iii) Render his opinion in writing on any question of law when requested to do so by the governor, mayor or sanggunian;

(iv) Investigate or cause to be investigated any local official or employee for administrative neglect or misconduct in office, and recommend appropriate action to the governor, mayor or sanggunian, as the case may be;

(v) Investigate or cause to be investigated any person, firm or corporation holding any franchise or exercising any public privilege for failure to comply with any term or condition in the grant of such franchise or privilege, and recommending appropriate action to the governor, mayor or sanggunian, as the case may be;

(vi) When directed by the governor, mayor, or sanggunian, initiate and prosecute in the interest of the local government unit concerned any civil action on any bond, lease or other contract upon any breach or violation thereof; and

(vii) Review and submit recommendations on ordinances approved and execute orders issued by component units;

(3) Recommend measures to the sanggunian and advise the governor or mayor as the case may be on

all other matters related to upholding the rule of law;

(4) Be in the frontline of protecting human rights and prosecuting any violations thereof, particularly those which occur during and in the aftermath of man-made or natural disasters or calamities; and

(5) Exercise such other powers and perform such other duties and functions as may be prescribed by law or ordinance.

For the Information Officer

Section 486. Qualifications, Powers and Duties.

(a) No person shall be appointed information officer unless he is a citizen of the Philippines, a resident of the local government unit concerned, of good moral character, a holder of a college degree preferably in journalism, mass communication or any related course from a recognized college or university, and a first grade civil service eligible or its equivalent. He must have experience in writing articles and research papers, or in writing for print, television or broadcast media of at least three (3) years in the case of the provincial or city information officer, and at least one (1) year in the case of municipal information officer.

The appointment of the information officer is optional for the provincial, city and municipal governments.

The term of the information officer is coterminous with that of his appointing authority.

(b) The information officer shall take charge of the office on public information and shall:

(1) Formulate measures for the consideration of the sanggunian and provide technical assistance and support to the governor or mayor, as the case may be, in providing the information and research data required for the delivery of basic services and provision of adequate facilities so that the public becomes aware of said services and may fully avail of the same;

(2) Develop plans and strategies and, upon approval thereof by the governor or mayor, as the case may be, implement the same, particularly those which have to do with public information and research data to support programs and projects which the governor or mayor is empowered to implement and which the sanggunian is empowered to provide for under this Code;

(3) In addition to the foregoing duties and functions, the information officer shall:

(i) Provide relevant, adequate, and timely information to the local government unit and its residents;

(ii) Furnish information and data on local government units to government agencies or offices as may be required by law or ordinance; and non-governmental organizations to be furnished to said agencies and organizations;

(iii) Maintain effective liaison with the various sectors of the community on matters and issues that affect the livelihood and the quality of life of the inhabitants and encourage support for programs of the local and national government;

(4) Be in the frontline in providing information during and in the aftermath of man-made and natural calamities and disasters, with special attention to the victims thereof, to help minimize injuries and casualties during and after the emergency, and to accelerate relief and rehabilitation;

(5) Recommend to the sanggunian and advise the governor or mayor, as the case may be, on all matters relative to public information and research data as it relates to the total socio-economic development of the local government unit; and

(c) Exercise such other powers and perform such other duties and functions as may be prescribed by law or ordinance.

Aside from the minimum qualifications required, they need to have a concurrence by the concerned Sanggunian. Otherwise, all appointments will be considered disapproved. Remember also that they don’t anymore fall under “whats confidential”.

As to the perennial question of whether or not appointing a relative to the position as administrator is nepotic, the Civil Service Commission has yet to find time reviewing the issue.

Or sigh.

Link to the resolution can be downloaded from here : http://excell.csc.gov.ph/MC2011/mc12s2011.pdf

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About jj cabrera

Auberon Waugh quotes that "the best people nowadays go into journalism, the second best into business, the rubbish into politics and the shits into law." I'm going to the kitchen and cook. Enjoy blog reading!

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