GUIHULNGAN City, Negros Oriental – Criminal and administrative charges was filed here last week with the Department of Interior and Local Government (DILG) by a resident against city Mayor Carlo Joan Reyes who allegedly violated the rules passed by the Inter-agency Task Force and Bayanihan Law on social distancing amid the coronavirus crisis.
It was gathered the local chief executive accordingly employed partisan politics amid the crisis as he allegedly singled out Barangay Poblacion residents by ordering them to queue up at the City Hall where he personally handed them their food rations.
As instructed by the mayor, the residents lined up for their food items but they were very close to one another in clear violation of the social distancing protocol the complainant said in filing the case with the DILG.
He added that this was instigated and tolerated by Reyes himself who is supposed to observe the proper rules and regulations imposed by the national government to prevent the spread of the virus the complainant said.
The chairman of Barangay Poblacion claimed they actually requested from Reyes to just give their village’s share of food and cash aids and distribute them direct to residents and save them from lining up and exposing themselves to Covid infection.
But Reyes rejected the request of the village chairman even as the mayor, he said, granted similar requests from other barangays in their city.
Accordingly, the act of Reyes smacks of politicking as he singled out Barangay Poblacion of not giving them their share of money and food items outright only because the chairman of the said Barangay is a political opponent of the said Mayor.
Such an act by the mayor is clearly a political maneuver which should not be expected nor condoned during the Covid-19 crisis the complainant said.
The said complaint is now under investigation by the DILG and according to Undersecretary Epi Densing, the Regional Office of the DILG is now verifying the report as the alleged action of the errant mayor is backed up by videos and photos.
Densing said that after the DILG’s verification of the issue, the mayor should expect a show cause order from the department and proper cases of criminal and administrative will be filed appropriately.