The Supreme Court (SC) has dismissed the petition filed by a former municipal mayor in Lanao del Sur questioning his suspension in connection with the charges of falsification of public documents filed against him in 2002.
In a ruling written by Associate Justice Mariano C. del Castillo, the SC dismissed the petition for certiorari filed by Hadji Hashim Abdul for being moot and academic.
The petition assailed the May 14, 2008 resolution of the Sandiganbayan suspending Abdul for a period of 90 days along with Tan-Alem Abdul and Candidato Domado from their respective official positions as Municipal Mayor, Human Resource Management Officer, and Budget Officer of the municipality of Mulondo, Lanao del Sur, respectively.
Likewise also questioned was the Sandiganbayan’s ruling on Sept. 2, 2008 denying petitioner’s motion for reconsideration (MR).
In 1999, Abdul, former municipal mayor, Tan-Alem, being then the Human Resource Management Officer, and Domado, being then the Budget Officer, all public officers, took advantage of their official positions after they made it appear that Engr. Zubair F. Murad prepared and signed the Local Budget Preparation Form Nos. 152, 153 and 154 known as the Program Appropriation and Obligation by Object, Personnel Schedule and Functional Statement and General Objective, respectively, when in truth Murad was never employed as engineer of the municipality, to the damage and prejudice of public interest.
Abdul was first elected as municipal mayor of Mulondo, Lanao del Sur in the May 1998 election and re-elected for a second term in the May 2001 election.
It was while serving his second term as municipal mayor when the Office of the Ombudsman-Mindanao filed an information on Sept. 5, 2002 charging him, along with others, with falsification of public documents.
The Sandiganbayan imposed on them a 90-day suspension due to the charges filed against them.
Abdul filed an MR, however, it was denied.
This prompted him to take the case to the SC.
While the petition was pending, the Sandiganbayan came out with a verdict absolving Abdul.
This pressed the SC to reject his petition against their suspension.
In the ruling, the SC said that “the issue on the validity or invalidity of petitioner’s suspension had been mooted considering his acquittal by the Sandiganbayan in its November 24, 2009 decision.” PNA