The government’s anticorruption drive has been revitalized, with the Revenue Integrity Protection Service (RIPS) charging an official of the Bureau of Customs (BOC) and another from the Insurance Commission (IC) for alleged irregularities in their statements of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN).
In a statement released on Monday, RIPS, a unit of the Department of Finance in charge of conducting lifestyle checks of public officials and employees, said it was intensifying its efforts to go after unscrupulous public servants, particularly by checking the accuracy of their SALNs.
RIPS announced it had filed on June 28 separate complaints against Rene Manuela A. Ochave and Mari Ann C. Osmeña, a BOC lawyer and an insurance specialist at the IC, respectively, for discrepancies between their SALNs and other official documents gathered in the process of investigation.
It said the two failed to declare some properties in their SALNs.
“[The] two officials are facing preliminary investigation by the Office of the Ombudsman due to nondisclosures and misleading information in their sworn SALNs, together with other administrative violations under civil service regulations,” the government unit said in the statement.
RIPS accused Ochave of failing to report on time a 317,000-square-meter property located in Albay that was in his wife’s name. The property was supposedly acquired by his wife in 2001 but was only reflected in Ochave’s SALN beginning 2006.
In 2011, RIPS said Ochave reported having acquired an Isuzu Crosswind for P428,000 but documents showed it was actually bought for P1.07 million.
RIPS accused Osmeña of failing to declare a house and lot in the Pacita Complex in Laguna that she allegedly acquired in 1982. It said she also failed to declare the purchase of a motor vehicle and a business by her husband.
RIPS likewise accused Osmeña of failing to declare several out-of-country trips. It noted that government officials and employees were strictly required to declare such trips.—Michelle V. Remo