THE Supreme Court (SC) has issued its final judgment on the case of a mayor in Pantar, Lanao del Norte who was ordered dismissed by the Ombudsman in connection with the administrative charges filed against him.
In an Entry of Judgment signed by then Clerk of Court Enriqueta Vidal, dated June 16, 2015, the high court upheld the Commission on Elections (Comelec) resolution issued on March 24, 2015 dismissing the disqualification complaint against Mohammad Limbona.
In the latest SC ruling, which was released to the media recently, would pave the way for Limbona to regain his post in view of the controversy spawned by the alleged illegal assumption to office of Municipal Vice Mayor Mangondaya Tago.
The case stemmed from the petition for disqualification filed by Malik Alingan against Limbona before the Comelec prior to the May 13, 2013 polls.
Alingan elevated the case before the Comelec En Banc after the poll’s body First Division dismissed his petition.
However, the Comelec En Banc junked Alingan’s petition for lack of merit as it cited the Aguinaldo doctrine, wherein an elective official with an administrative violation is cleared of charges if he is re-elected by the people.
Limbona, who was elected punong barangay of Barangay Kalanganan Lower of Pantar town, and his wife, then municipal mayor Norlaine Mitmug Limbona were found by the Ombudsman to be administratively liable for Grave Misconduct, Oppression, and Conduct Prejudicial to the Best Interest of the Service. They were meted the penalty of dismissal from the service with the accessory penalties of cancellation of eligibility, among others.
However, Limbona was elected mayor on May 10, 2010 and re-elected May 2013 polls.