City lawyers investigate 5 OSC center officials

FOLLOWING the escape of minors from the Operation Second Chance (OSC), a temporary facility for juvenile offenders in Cebu City, five lawyers are conducting an inquiry to determine the reasons behind the incident.

The team from the City Legal Office (CLO), led by City Attorney Rey Gealon, are investigating OSC Director Ambrosio Ibones and four other officials.

Gealon said the CLO had sent notices to the five OSC officials, directing them to explain why the six children in conflict with the law (CICL) succeeded in escaping from the facility in Barangay Kalunasan on Dec. 22, 2019. Three of the escapees already returned to the OSC, while the other CICLs remain at large.

Mayor Edgardo Labella had authorized the investigation.

Gealon said that if the CLO found the OSC officials guilty of misconduct, they would face complaints for neglecting their duties, a violation under Presidential Decree 807 (Civil Service Decree of the Philippines) and Republic Act 6713 (Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees).

Ibones and his subordinates would also be removed from their posts, said Gealon.

Last Oct., 30 CICLs tried to flee from the OSC. However, the guards prevented 10 residents from escaping.

Of the 20 escapees, nine were caught by the OSC personnel while nine others voluntarily returned to the facility. Only two CICLs remain at large. Some of the CICLs said they attempted to escape the facility because they wanted to be with their families again. (JCT)