THE Office of the Ombudsman has found the former mayor of Pantukan, Compostela Valley guilty of misconduct in connection with his failure to divest his business interests in a mining company.
Former Mayor Juan Cipriano Celso Sarenas was thus ordered to pay a fine equivalent to two months’ salary while in office.
The Ombudsman decision showed that prior to 2010 when Sarenas was elected mayor, owned 7,500 shares from Quasar Mining Corporation.
It said that Sarenas should have divested his shareholdings within 60 days from assumption of office under the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees, according to the Ombudsman.
“[I]n this case, as respondent Sarenas is the local chief executive of Pantukan, his position and interest in Quasar Mining Corporation is opposed to or affected by the faithful performance of his official duty,” it said.
“[C]onsidering there is a conflict of interest, Sarenas resigned from the position in the corporation but failed to divest his shareholdings,” it added.
The Ombudsman also directed the municipal treasurer of Pantukan to submit Sarena’s compliance with the penalty.