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Magpet budget officer wins battle” vs. town mayor

Local News • 21:11 PM Fri Dec 4, 2015
Edwin Fernandez
Erly R. Baudi, CSC reinstated municipal budget officer of Magpet, North Cotabato.

KIDAPAWAN CITY – The Civil Service Commission (CSC)
has directed a town mayor in North Cotabato to reinstate the town budget
officer he terminated without due process and valid reasons.

In a decision issued by CSC-12 Director IV Grace Belgado
Saqueton, CPA, promulgated on October 29, 2015, the CSC director Mayor
Florenito Gonzaga of Magpet, North Cotabato to reinstate Erly Roque Baudi of
Barangay Tagbac, Magpet to the position of municipal budget officer.

(The) assailed action of Mayor Gonzaga dropping
Baudi from the rolls is baseless. Neither
was it made in accordance with pertinent CSC rules nor the duly approved Agency
Performance Evaluation System of the Municipal Government of Magpet,” part of
the CSC promulgation said.

Consequently, Mayor Gonzaga is directed to
reinstate Erly R. Baudi to her position as Municipal Budget Officer with
payment of back salaries from the time she was terminated from the service up
to her actual reinstatement,” the CSC ruling said.

What went before

Baudi started working in Magpet on Nov. 3, 1992 as
clerk of the municipal treasurer’s office. She rose from the ranks and
appointed accounting clerk II in 1993 until she was named municipal budget
officer of Magpet 11 years later, or specifically on Nov. 16, 2004.

The position of municipal budget officer is
permanent.When Gonzaga was elected mayor and assumed office in
2013, he reassigned Baudi, through Memorandum Order (MO) No. 19, to the office
of the town mayor and designated her as supervisor of the Magpet Waterworks
Services from her position as town budget officer.

Baudi believed her reassignment was an oppressive act
of Mayor Gonzaga. With a heavy heart, she
obeyed the memorandum order anyway.

On January 2014, Baudi submitted Action Plan for
Magpet Waterworks Services and Accomplishment Reports covering the period July
to December 2013 as required by Gonzaga’s memorandum.

In May 7, 2014, Gonzaga relieved Baudi as supervisor
of Magpet Waterworks Services by issuing MO No. 50 and reassigned her as Market
Supervisor under the Office of the Economic Enterprise of Magpet.

Still with a heavy heart, Baudi complied with the
mayor’s order. But she sent a letter to
Mayor Gonzaga asking if her Performance Incentive Allowance (PIA) will remain
while she was budget officer until after she was named supervisor of waterworks
services and later market supervisor.

As market supervisor, Baudi regularly submitted her weekly
accomplishment reports to the mayor’s office.

Gonzaga sent Baudi a letter dated May 8, 2015, informing
her that the Performance Evaluation Sheet (PES) was incomplete for having no
weighted percentage, no rate form attached...”

Four days later, Baudi submitted her explanation and
sought an audience with the Performance Evaluation and Review Committee (PERC).

These were never granted.

On July 3, 2015, Gonzaga issued Office Order No.
002, dropping Baudi from the rolls due to poor performance. Allegedly, Baudi obtained
a poor performance rating for the January-June 2014 rating period and
July-December 2014 rating period.

On July 8, 2015, Baudi filed a motion for
reconsideration of the said order dropping her from the rolls. On July 24, 2015, Gonzaga denied Baudi’s motion.

She appealed her case before the CSC.

In coming up with a promulgation, the CSC cited a
jurisprudence (National Power Corporation vs. Agustin A. Zozobrado, G.R.
153022, April 10, 2006), which states as followsand Dropping from the rolls
means separation from the service. Such separation is made summarily, without
any case, investigation or due process. For this reason we submit that the rule
should be strictly construed in order that it may not be used as a tool for harassment,
vindictiveness or removal of any employee who happens to fall out of grace of
his superior or superior officers.”

The CSC said it is clear from the records that
Baudi was not informed in writing of the status of her performance not later
than the 4th month of January to June 2014 rating period neither was
she informed thereafter.”

It addedand Baudi was not warned in writing that
failure to improve her performance within the remaining months of the rating
period shall warrant her separation from the service. As there was an evident
absence of written notice and warning regarding her poor performance, Baudi was
deprived of the due process requirement under the rules before she was dropped
from the rolls.”

In short, she was not given the opportunity, or even
officially informed, to improve her poor performance as prescribed by rules.

The CSC said Magpet Office Order No. 002, issued by
Gonzaga on July 3, 2015 dropping Baudi from the rolls is hereby declared null
and void.”

Baudi was appointed in 2004 as town budget officer by
then Magpet Mayor Efren Pinol, now the town’s vice mayor.

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