TUGUEGARAO CITY, Philippines- The Regional Trial Court (RTC) granted the petition for mandamus of Cagayan Governor Manuel Mamba directing the Sangguniang Panlalawigan, in its regular sessions, not to include any agenda but the proposed 2017 executive budget.
In a press release, Cagayan government public information officer Rogie Sending said the court on Monday, August 14, “partly” granted Mamba’s petition and directed Vice Governor Melvin Vargas and the provincial board members to fast track the passage of the proposed budget.
Mamba had earlier asked the court to mandate the provincial board to conduct daily sessions with the proposed 2017 budget as the only agenda. The court, however, only mandated the board to discuss the budget in its weekly regular sessions.
The 14-page decision, ordered by Judge Cacatian-Beltran of the RTC Branch 3, said the provincial board will hold sessions about the budget until its passage.
“Accordingly, the respondents are directed to continue to hold sessions on the annual budget for the current fiscal year in its regular sessions without additional remuneration and without other business during such sessions until an appropriation ordinance is enacted,” the decision reads.
The Northern Forum asked Vargas for a statement but has yet respond to the message.
Mamba, according to Sending, rejoiced over the decision of the court saying the provincial board was only directed “to do its job.”
The provincial board, citing some “irregularities” and failure to follow the budgeting process on the part of Mamba, has yet to approve the P3-billion budget for 2017, nearly four months before the end of the year. Northernforum.net