City dad to Apolinario, et al on deadly market fire: Resign! PDF Print E-mail
Friday, 06 November 2015 11:39

Admitting responsibility is next to accountability.

Thus said District 1 Councilor Cesar Jimenez,Jr. in reference to OIC City Administrator and CDRMMO Chief Dr. Elmeir Apolinario’s statement that he takes “full responsibility” for the tragedy at the old public market last Saturday where 15 people were killed and 13 others injured.

Jimenez said that admitting guilt is tantamount to liability in the alleged negligence of duty and responsibility on the job given them by the city’s chief executive.

In an interview with RMN Zamboanga, Jimenez also cited the command responsibility of each and every official involved in the market operations.

“If the mayor has to suspend employees, it should not be only one but all those involved in the market enterprise operations from top to bottom and not to put the blame only on one person,” Jimenez said.

He also called on his colleagues in the city council to support the clamor of the people to conduct a  deeper investigation on that tragic incident, as well as dig deeper into the accountabilities of each and every city official involved in market operations in aid of legislation.

He said that it is a clear manifestation that the administration of all public markets in the city is  under the supervision and controls of the Office of the City Administrator, who is accountable  of everything that happens in the said government enterprise.

“This is an issue to which the council will not really close our eyes, as far as I am concern, Apolinario and those directly supervising the market should go on leave or resign from their respective posts to remove the impression that there will be white wash or they may influence in the investigation, they should not wait for the mayor to suspend them,” Jimenez said.

He said that considering the importance of this issue from the very start of the investigation, nobody should be suspected to influence the ongoing process.

“If they say “I Love Zamboanga” they should spare city hall from further controversies. Whatever will the result of the investigation is only the start and not the end of everything,” Jimenez added.

Jimenez said that the present situation and the appropriate actions of those responsible employees supervising the market is very important and accountability should be determined as negligence is not an excuse and they can never be excused in saying that they never know that there are people staying there.

“I would not expect the legal team to take long in the investigation... there is no reason for that, and we cannot allow people staying there and continue to perform their duties while investigation on them is ongoing,” Jimenez said.

Councilor Melchor Sadain also said that since Dr. Apolinario is the so called “tough guy” in the present administration, handling several designations aside from his present position as the CDRRMO chief, he should learn to say “No” to the mayor or to whatever additional job given him beyond his mandate which makes him too pre-occupied with lots of responsibilities which makes him in-effective.

“Apolinario has been tasked to perform several functions. He is not a superhero to be able to do everything at one time. We are depriving the people of having the due time delivery of services they needed, one time delay makes another task replicated,” Sadain said.

Sadain said that Apolinario should bear in mind that serving one master with several descriptions would mean a lot of manifold unperformed responsibilities given him.

“It’s high time the mayor should appoint a permanent City Administrator, falta ya lang dale con Apolinario el Office of the Mayor above all his multiple tasking,” Sadain said.

Councilor Charlie Mariano also supported the statements of his colleagues in the city council saying that he will be also bringing up similar matters of accountabilities and “heads must roll” after the loss of many lives in the Magay blaze.

Mariano said that it is high time that the city government should also review the Market Ordinance and put more teeth on it, for those violators to be penalized and get more serious with the law enforcement procedures on it.

He said that in their scheduled regular session they are considering to have a dialogue with the officials involved in the market operations in aid of legislation to shed light on this issue and to determine the liabilities of those supervisors about their negligence in performing their respective jobs.

The fire that hit the ukay-ukay area claimed the lives of 15 people and injured 13 others. Estimated damage to properties is P8 million. – Bhong Simbajon/RMN News