Former Municipal Mayor Celestino Martinez 3rd of Bogo (now City) in Cebu is asking the Sandiganbayan’s Fifth Division to take a second look at its ruling for his 90- day pending litigation of the graft and malversation charges he is facing.
The court earlier ordered the preventive suspension of Martinez—who is now an ex-officio Board Member of the Sanggunian Panlalawigan (Provincial Council) of Cebu—along with Bogo city councilors Rhett Minguez and Cresencio Verdida as well as Lapu-Lapu, Cebu city Mayor Paz Radaza.
In a four-page motion for reconsideration (MR) filed on November 16, Martinez asked “that the Resolution dated 21 October 2015 be reversed and set aside and a pre-suspension hearing requiring the accused officer to show cause why he should not be ordered suspended from office be conducted before the order of suspension against him be implemented.”
Based on the motion, Martinez received the court’s ruling on November 4. The defense, citing the Rules of Procedure, said he had 15 days or until November 19 to file a motion for reconsideration.
His camp argued that a pre-suspension hearing aims to secure fair and adequate opportunity for the accused to challenge the validity of the charge sheet or the regularity of the proceedings against him.
“In this case, there was no show cause order issued by the Honorable Court before his suspension in office was ordered. We are in view that there is a need for a pre-suspension hearing to determine the validity and propriety of the charges made against the herein Accused before an order of suspension be issued,” the defense said.