Ampongan v. People


Ampongan v. People

G.R. Nos. 234670-71

August 14, 2019


                That on 3 November 2014, or sometime prior or subsequent thereto, in Iriga City, Camarines Sur, Philippines, and within the jurisdiction of this Honorable Court, accused OMAR ERASMO GONOWON AMPONGAN, a high-ranking public officer, being the City Vice-Mayor of Iriga City, in such capacity, committing the crime in relation to office and while in the performance of his official functions, acting with evident bad faith, manifest partiality and/or gross inexcusable negligence, give unwarranted benefits, advantage or preference to Edsel S. Dimaiwat by appointing the latter to the vacant position of Secretary to the Sangguniang Panlungsod of Iriga City without the Iriga City Personnel Selection board having conducted a screening or deliberation on the qualifications of the candidates to the said vacant position, to the damage and prejudice of the public interest.


                Whether or not the Sandiganbayan erred its decision and resolution


                No. Section 4(a) of P.D. No. 1606, as amended by R.A. No. 8249, provides, among others, that officials of the executive branch occupying positions of regional director and higher, otherwise classified as Grade 27 and higher, of the Compensation and Position Classification Act of 1989 and those specifically enumerated positions therein, i.e., without regard to salary grade, which include the position of, among others, Vice Mayors, are within the exclusive original jurisdiction of the Sandiganbayan if these public officials commit crimes involving: (a) violations ofR.A. No. 3019, as amended, R.A. No. 1379, and Chapter II, Section 2, Title VII of the Revised Penal Code; and (b) other offenses or felonies committed in relation to their office. In this case, petitioner was charged with violation of Section 3( e) of R.A. No. 3019 and Falsification of Public Document under Article 171 (2) of the Revised Penal Code which he allegedly committed when he was the Vice Mayor oflriga City. Violation ofR.A. No.3019 is one of those offenses, when committed by the public official enumerated in the law, to be under the Sandiganbayan's jurisdiction. While the charge of falsification is not specifically included in the enumeration of crimes over which the Sandiganbayan has jurisdiction, however, such crime falls under the category of other offenses committed in relation to the office of the public official enumerated under the law.

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