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PALOMA v.

MORA
FACTS

Petitioner Nilo Paloma was appointed General Manager of the Palompon,


Leyte Water District by its Board of Directors in 1993.
His services were subsequently terminated by virtue of Resolution No. 8-
95 of the Board of the Palompon, Leyte Water District
Pained by his termination, petitioner filed a petition for mandamus with
prayer for preliminary injunction with damages before the RTC to contest
his dismissal with the prayer to be restored to the position of General
Manager.
Petitioners Arguments

Petitioner argues that the passage of Resolution No. 8-95 resulting in his
dismissal was a capricious and arbitrary act on the part of the Board of
Directors, constituting a denial of his constitutional right to due process
because:
the grounds relied upon therein to terminate him were never made a
subject of a complaint
he was not notified and made to explain the acts he was said to be
guilty of.
ISSUE

Whether or not the Court of Appeals committed any reversible error in


its challenged decision.
The Supreme Court was tasked to resolve: whether or not mandamus
will lie to compel the Board of Directors of the Palompon, Leyte Water
District to reinstate the General Manager thereof
HELD

Mandamus does not lie to compel the Board of Directors of the


Palompon, Leyte Water District to reinstate petitioner because the Board
has the discretionary power to remove him
P.D. No. 198, otherwise known as THE PROVINCIAL WATER UTILITIES ACT
OF 1973, categorically provides that the general manager shall serve at
the pleasure of the board of directors, viz:
Section 23. Additional Officers. - At the first meeting of the board, or
as soon thereafter as practicable, the board shall appoint, by a majority
vote, a general manager, an auditor, and an attorney, and shall define
their duties and fix their compensation. Said officers shall serve at the
pleasure of the board.
Nature of the Appointment

The case of Mita Pardo de Tavera v. Philippine Tuberculosis Society, Inc.


delineated the nature of an appointment held at the pleasure of the
appointing power in this wise:
An appointment held at the pleasure of the appointing power is in
essence temporary in nature. It is co-extensive with the desire of the Board
of Directors. Hence, when the Board opts to replace the
incumbent, technically there is no removal but only an
expiration of term and in an expiration of term, there is no
need of prior notice, due hearing or sufficient grounds before
the incumbent can be separated from office.
HELD

Here, considering that the petitioner is in stubborn dispute with the


Board, the formers services obviously ceased to be pleasurable to the
latter.
Put another way, petitioner is at the mercy of the appointing powers
since his appointment can be terminated at any time for any cause and
there is no need of prior notice or due hearing before the incumbent can
be separated from office.