Re: Appointment; Qualification Standards




            Arnaldo C. Cuasay, Conception Madarang, Consuelo Manansala, Ruben Aguilar and Consuelo Villamor, all employees of the Government Service Insurance System (GSIS) filed a petition for the revocation of the appointment of Elvira U. Geronimo as Vice President, Physical Resource Group. The alleged, inter alia, that Geronimo is not a Career Service Executive (CES eligible and that her appointment to a CES position was made in violation of existing Civil Service laws and rules as there are CES eligibles, like them, who are qualified to the subject position.

The material portions of their petition reads as follows:

            "10) When defendant-respondent was appointed to the position above alluded to, there were and are CESO’s qualified and available for said position who are four (4) of the plaintiffs-complainants, to wit:

Consuelo Manansala ……….. August 1994

Ruben Aguilar ………………... December 1994

Concepcion Madarang ……… August 1994

Arnaldo Cuasay ……………… February 1993

            "11) Not being a CESO and with the above-mentioned Vice-President and Managers present and qualified, defendant-respondent’s appointment as VP Physical Resources Group, even ig it be designated SVP, Administration Group are void ab initio and, therefore, totally ineffective, x x x

            "12) Her appointment as Vice-President cannot be considered as temporary, because x x x a temporary appointment or acting capacity x x x can be issued only in the absence of appropriate eligibles, which essential element is conspicuously lacking as alleged above.

            "13) Assuming for the sake of argument, that defendant-respondent’s questioned appointment as VP, Physical Resources, is seemingly valid as temporary, it ended twelve (12) months thereafter or more specifically on December 13, 1995, and from that date her appointment ceased to have any force and effect and therefore, she was accordingly and automatically reverted to her former position as Department Manager III, SG-26 and all her former position as Department Manager III, SG-26 and all her official actions flowing therefrom were and are illegal and illicit, x x x

            "14) x x x it necessarily follows that her designations as OIC, SVP, Administration Group, which sprang from her being a so-called Vice-President, Physical Resources, is null and void, and this inefficiency attaches to all her official moves and actuations as such OIC."

            Commenting on the petition, GSIS President and General Manager Cesar N. Sarino stated as follows:

            "10. That it is clear that the appointment of a non-CES eligible to the 3rd level career positions is not absolutely proscribed or prohibited by law. What is prohibited is the issuance of a permanent appointment to one who does not have the CES eligibility. In other words, the only effect of the appointment a non-CES eligible to a career executive position is that the person so appointed will not have security of tenure to the position (Cuadra v. Cordova, 103 Phil. 391).

            "11. That the filing on April 10, 1997 of the instant protest by the complainants challenging the appointment of the respondents as Vice President, Physical Resources Group, on December 13, 1994 is two (2) years and three (3) months late, considering that Rule 42 of the Rules of Procedure of the Honorable Commission provides that protest must be filed with the Honorable Commission within fifteen (15) days from notice by the protestant of the issuance of the appointment or promotion. As a matter of fact, Rule 47 likewise provides that the protest shall be dismissed if "(e)(t) the protest is filed outside of the reglementary period.

            "12. That as regards the designation of Ms. Geronimo as OIC, SVP (Administration Group) which was approved and confirmed by the GSIS Board of Trustees under Resolution No. 85 on March 13, 1997, the instant protest was also filed out of time inasmuch as it was filed only on April 10, 1997;

            "13. That, moreover, there is no allegation in the complaint that the protestants/complainants are ‘next-in-rank’ nor did the complaint comply with the procedural requirements as mandated under Rule 41 of the Rules of Procedure of the Honorable Commission;

            "14. That the appointing authority, namely, the Board of Trustees of the GSIS, exercised due care and circumspect in the appointment of the respondent to her position. Her designation as OIC-SVP (Administration Group) was upon the recommendation of the SPECIAL MANCOM GROUP, composed of no less than the Executive Vice President, five senior vice presidents and one vice president, and indorsed for approval by the undersigned."

            Records show that Elvira U. Geronimo was issued a permanent appointment as Vice President, Physical Resources Group on December 16, 1994. Said appointment, however, bears a notation that "appointee does not have security of tenure she obtains a CES eligibility". Concomitant with said appointment, she was designated as Officer-In-Charge/Senior Vice President, Administration. Records further show that Geronimo is not a CES eligible and at the time her promotional appointment and designation as OIC/SVP, Administration, was issued, there were qualified CES eligibles who could be promoted to said position.

            After a careful review of the records at hand and the arguments of the petitioners, the Commission does not find merit in the instant petition.

            It is true that the time Geronimo was appointed as Vice-President, Physical Resources Group, she did not have a CES eligibility. However, lately, Geronimo allegedly obtained a CES eligibility according to the Career Executive Service Board (CESB). In his letter dated October 14, 1997, CESB Executive Director Elmor D. Juridico addressed to Geronimo, stated that Geronimo is a holder of a CES eligibility. The pertinent portion thereof reads as follows:

            "x x x the CES Board, in its 10 October 1997 meeting, has conferred a CES eligibility on you. As a CES eligible, your name will now be entered into our official roster of CES eligibles. You will also be entitled to a certificate of CES eligibility.

            "We are also pleased to inform you that being an incumbent to a CES position, you now qualify for appointment to a CES rank. x x x"

            As appointee Geronimo is now qualified and eligible, her appointment as Vice President, Physical Resource Group must be upheld. Thus, the petition has no basis and must therefore be dismissed.

            Finally, it should be pointed out that said CES eligibility as conferred by the CESB is presumed valid and effective until and unless declared otherwise by a competent authority.

            WHEREFORE, the petition of Arnaldo Cuasay, et al. is hereby denied. Accordingly, the appointment of Elvira U. Geronimo as VP Physical Resources Group, is upheld.

            Quezon City, January 20, 1998


  Attested by:

Board Secretary VI