WHETHER OR NOT THE RESPONDENT IS THE RIGHTFUL HOLDER OF THE POSITION OF DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL, PUBLIC RELATIONS AND INFORMATION DEPARTMENT UNTIL 31 JULY 2001.

By Decision of October 28, 2004, the appellate court found that the position of Deputy Secretary General, PRID pertains to the non-career service;  respondent held a primarily confidential position and her tenure was thus coterminous with and subject to the pleasure of the appointing authority, and her termination could be justified only on the ground of loss of confidence;  and respondent’s removal was without cause, as petitioner itself made no pretense about the absence of said ground.

The appellate court thus affirmed CSC Resolution Nos. 021103 and 030065 with modification in that it declared the removal of Loanzon and the appointment of Emmanuel Albano in her place null and void.

Hence, the present petition submitting that the appellate court gravely erred in:

I


x x x CLASSIFYING THE POSITION OF DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL, PUBLIC RELATIONS AND INFORMATION DEPARTMENT AS A PRIMARILY CONFIDENTIAL POSITION BELONGING TO THE NON-CAREER SERVICE.

II


x x x HOLDING THAT RESPONDENT’S TERMINATION OF HER TEMPORARY APPOINTMENT AS DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL, PUBLIC RELATIONS AND INFORMATION DEPARTMENT IS IL[L]EGAL AND THE APPOINTMENT OF MR. EMMANUEL ALBANO IN HER PLACE, NULL AND VOID.

Petitioner contends that contrary to the appellate court’s ruling, the position of Deputy Secretary General, PRID belongs to the career service, as the appointee to said position is chosen only if he or she meets the qualification standards for the position including eligibility requirement;  and respondent’s appointment was made on the basis of the usual test of merit and fitness for the career service because she was required to have either Career Service Executive (CSE) or Career Executive Service (CES) eligibility, which explains why her appointment was denominated permanent with a colatilla, however, that she did not have security of tenure until she obtained a CES eligibility.

Petitioner also asseverates that respondent’s tenure cannot be considered coterminous with the appointing authority as she held the same position under Speakers Villar, Fuentebella and Belmonte, all of the Eleventh Congress, and was even allowed to serve under the Twelfth Congress. If respondent’s appointment was highly confidential and coterminous, then, concludes petitioner, her term should have ended when Speaker Villar ceased to hold the speakership.

Petitioner further contends that although respondent’s appointment was denominated as permanent, it was in reality temporary because of the express qualification that she did not have security of tenure unless she obtained a CES eligibility;  and that following the Revised Administrative Code of 1987 which provides that temporary appointments shall not exceed twelve months, respondent’s appointment ceased on March 8, 2000, citing Pangilinan v. Maglaya.

The petition is impressed with merit.

Paragraph 6 of CSC Resolution No. 967961 furnishes the qualification standards for Deputy Secretary General of the House of Representatives, thus:

6. DEPUTY SECRETARY GENERAL OF THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES (SG – 30)

Education    :    Bachelor’s degree
Experience  :    3 years supervisory experience
Training       :    None required
Eligibility   :    Career Service Executive (CSE)
                        Career Executive Service (CES)

                        (Emphasis supplied)


Clearly, the position of Deputy Secretary General of the House of Representatives belongs to the career service which is, so the Civil Service Law provides, characterized, among other things, by entrance based on merit and fitness to be determined as far as practicable by competitive examinations, or based on highly technical qualifications and security of tenure.  The holder of the position can only enjoy security of tenure if he or she possesses the qualifications and eligibility prescribed for it.

In respondent’s case, although respondent’s appointment was denominated as “permanent,” it having been “proposed as permanent,” it was in reality temporary for, so her CSC appointment paper clearly stated, she did not enjoy security tenure as she lacked the eligibility requirement for the position.  Thus the Revised Administrative Code of 1987 provides:

Section 27. Employment Status. – Appointment in the career service shall be permanent or temporary.

(1) Permanent status. – A permanent appointment shall be issued to a person who meets all the requirements for the position to which he is being appointed, including the appropriate eligibility prescribed, in accordance with the provisions of law, rules and standards promulgated in pursuance thereof.

(2) Temporary appointment. – In the absence of appropriate eligibles and it becomes necessary in the public interest to fill a vacancy, a temporary appointment shall be issued to a person who meets all the requirements for the position to which he is being appointed except the appropriate civil service eligibility: Provided, That such temporary appointment shall not exceed twelve months, but the appointee may be replaced sooner if a qualified civil service eligible becomes available.  (Emphasis and underscoring supplied)

In fine, respondent’s appointment was merely temporary, not to exceed twelve months.  Since she was appointed on March 8, 1999, it was effective only for one year or up to March 8, 2000.  Having continued, however, to hold on to her position up to July 25, 2001 when Albano was appointed by Speaker de Venecia, she did so in a hold-over capacity.

Respondent argues that Albano too does not possess CES eligibility and his appointment in her stead is thus legally untenable.  The case of General v. Roco instructs otherwise.  Roco was appointed in August 1996 by then President Ramos as Land Transportation Office (LTO) Regional Director, a position equivalent to CES rank level V.  He was subsequently appointed to the same position by President Estrada in February 1999.  In August 1999, he was conferred CES eligibility, but still did not possess the appropriate CES rank level V for his position.  General, who was not a CES eligible, was subsequently appointed by President Estrada to the same position occupied by Roco.

On a petition for quo warranto filed by Roco, the Court of Appeals nullified General’s appointment.

When the case reached this Court, this Court, ruling in favor of General, held that the law allows the appointment of those who are not CES eligible, subject to the obtention of said eligibility, in the same manner that the appointment of Roco, who did not possess the required CES rank level V for the position of LTO Regional Director, was allowed in a temporary capacity.

Even if Albano then did not possess the required eligibility, following General, his appointment was not legally infirm.

CSC Resolution No. 021103 which subsequently held that Speaker De Venecia should not have issued an appointment to Albano on July 25, 2001 until after the expiration on July 31, 2001 of respondent’s detail on the Quezon City Mayor’s Office does not thus lie.  As correctly pleaded by petitioner before the appellate court, when Nazareno approved Mayor Belmonte’s request for respondent’s detail until July 31, 2001, Speaker de Venecia had not yet been elected and assumed office as speaker.  With Speaker de Venecia’s subsequent election and assumption of office as speaker, Nazareno’s action as secretary-general became subject to supervision and control, hence, it could be revoked anytime.

By thus appointing Albano on July 25, 2001, Speaker de Venecia impliedly revoked or modified Nazareno’s action by shortening the period of the approved detail.

As for the Speaker’s approval on October 25, 2001 of Mayor Belmonte’s second request for respondent’s detail to his office effective August 1, 2001, the same may be taken as mere oversight on the part of the Speaker.

WHEREFORE, the petition is GRANTED. The challenged Court of Appeals Decision and Resolution are SET ASIDE.  Civil Service Commission Resolution No. 02-0224 dated February 14, 2002 is REINSTATED.

SO ORDERED.

SOURCE: [ G.R. NO. 168267, February 16, 2006 ]HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES AS REPRESENTED BY ITS SECRETARY GENERAL, ROBERTO P. NAZARENO, PETITIONER, VS. ATTY. VICTORIA V. LOANZON, RESPONDENT. Tags: property warehouse for rent for lease marc Christian yncierto ruz jan Edmond yncierto ruz Kristin Villanueva ruz Edmond mabalot ruz marriage certificate timber land forest land watershed agricultural lot land use Alcantara Alcoy moral damages Alegria actual damages Aloguinsan Argao Asturias Badian Balamban Bantayan Barili Boljoon Borbon Carmen Catmon Compostela Consolacion Cordova Daanbantayan Dumaguete Bais Sibulan Tampi Bacong Negros Bacolod Separation pay Resign Resignation conversion hearing trial illegal drugs trial lawyer business corporate lawyer labor lawyer immigration law bureau of immigration cebu 9g visa search warrant warrant of arrest motion to quash information complaint police officers buy bust physical suffering shocked horrified mental anguish fright serious anxiety besmirched reputation sleepless nights wounded feelings moral shock social humiliation similar injuries Real Estate Broker nominal damages Sales Agent Properties for Sale Looking for Buyers Design Build House and Lot for Sale for Rent Talisay City Mandaue City Lapu Lapu Lapu-Lapu City Yncierto Sesante Villanueva Ruz Jan Edmond Marc Tim Timothy temperate damages Luz liquidated damages Kristin tct transfer certificate of title tax declaration birth certificate relocation survey surveying judicial titling administrative titling patent title denr cenro foreshore lease ecc environmental compliance certificate design build architect cebu engineer interior design designer residential commercial cebu Back wages Backwages Length of service pay benefit employee employer relationship Silay Kabankalan Daan Bantayan Dalaguete Dumanjug Ginatilan Liloan compensatory damages Madridejos Malabuyoc Medellin Minglanilla Moalboal Oslob Pilar Pinamungajan Poro Ronda Samboan San Fernando San Francisco San Remigio Sante Fe Santander Sibonga Sogod Tabogon Tabuelan Tuburan attorney’s fees Tudela exemplary damages Camotes General Luna Siargao Cagayan Davao Kidapawan Attorney Abogado Lawyer Architect

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