MANILA, Philippines – Negros Oriental Gov. Roel Degamo has secured a 60-day temporary restraining order (TRO) against the implementation of a ruling of the Office of the Ombudsman dismissing him from office.
In a resolution penned by Associate Justice Stephen Cruz released on Thursday, the fifth division of the Court of Appeals (CA) said Degamo remains as governor as the status quo in the province should be maintained.
The CA also ordered its clerk of court to serve copies of the TRO to the ombudsman, Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) and other concerned agencies and parties.
The ombudsman dismissed Degamo for grave misconduct for misusing P480 million in calamity funds in 2012. He refused to vacate his office even as the DILG installed Vice Gov. John Edward Mark Macias as acting governor on Friday last week.
Macias, who is holding office at Sidlakang Negros near the provincial capitol, said he would give way to Degamo if ordered by the DILG.
Until the DILG asks him to vacate his post, Macias said he would continue to perform his duty as governor lest he be accused of or be held liable for dereliction of duty.
Provincial board member Rommel Erames said the TRO would only be effective once the DILG serves the order at the provincial capitol, at the earliest by next week.