Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Case Digest: G.R. No. 131136. February 28, 2001

Conrado L. De Rama, petitioner, vs. The Court Of Appeals (Ninth Division, The Civil Service Commission), Eladio Martinez, Divino De Jesus, Morell Ayala, Aristeo Catalla, Daisy Porta, Flordeliza Oriasel, Graciela Glory, Felecidad Orinday, Ma. Petra Muffet Luce, Elsa Marino, Bernardita Mendoza, Jane Macatangay, Adelfo Glodoviza and Florino Ramos, respondents.

Facts: Upon his assumption to the position of Mayor of Pagbilao, Quezon, petitioner Conrado L. de Rama wrote a letter dated July 13, 1995 to the Civil Service Commission (or CSC), seeking the recall of the appointments of fourteen (14) municipal employees. Justifying his recall request on the allegation that the appointments of the said employees were “midnight” appointments of the former mayor, Ma. Evelyn S. Abeja, done in violation of Article VII, Section 15 of the 1987 Constitution. The CSC denied petitioner’s request for the recall of the appointments of the fourteen employees, for lack of merit. The CSC upheld the validity of the appointments on the ground that they had already been approved by the Head of the CSC Field Office in Lucena City, and for petitioner’s failure to present evidence that would warrant the revocation or recall of the said appointments.

Issue:  whether or not the recall made by petitioner is valid.

Ruling: No. It is the CSC that is authorized to recall an appointment initially approved, but only when such appointment and approval are proven to be in disregard of applicable provisions of the civil service law and regulations. Rule V, Section 9 of the Omnibus Implementing Regulations of the Revised Administrative Code specifically provides that “an appointment accepted by the appointee cannot be withdrawn or revoked by the appointing authority and shall remain in force and in effect until disapproved by the Commission.

Accordingly, the appointments of the private respondents may only be recalled on the following grounds: (a) Non-compliance with the procedures/criteria provided in the agency’s Merit Promotion Plan; (b) Failure to pass through the agency’s Selection/Promotion Board; (c) Violation of the existing collective agreement between management and employees relative to promotion; or (d) Violation of other existing civil service law, rules and regulations.

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