Martires sees religious education as key to combating corruption

Martires sees religious education as key to combating corruption

/ 08:16 PM July 25, 2019

Martires sees religious education as key to combating corruption

Ombudsman Samuel Martires during a multi-sectoral meeting. PHOTO/Gabriel Pabico Lalu

MANILA, Philippines – Ombudsman Samuel Martires has proposed strengthening values formation and religious education in schools to combat corruption in the government.

“I will assure everyone that I will shift from prosecution and investigation to values formation and religious education, as the main entry points in preventing corruption,” Martires said during a multi-sectoral meeting on Thursday.


“Investigation and prosecution come after a corrupt act has been committed. We have to prevent it. And the only way to prevent is to go back to the past, where our moral standards were high, where our moral values were based on religion, not on society and government,” he added.


Martires said this shortly after he admitted that corruption in the country would probably not stop, especially with the advent of technology.

“When will corruption stop? […] I said never. Never can we stop corruption, not in the next 100 or 1,000 years. Corruption will never stop. The more technology will become sophisticated, the more corruption will become sophisticated,” he explained.

During the multi-sectoral meeting which was attended by different stakeholders from various religious denominations, education sector, school officials, and legal minds, the Office of the Ombudsman presented its program where they tour schools to teach about the importance of fighting corruption.

Martires said that if his vision would be implemented by education agencies, he would resign from his post.

“Sana magtagumpay itong programang ito, na sana sa susunod na school year masimulan ‘yong religious education. Baka pwedeng simulan natin. ‘Pag ito’y nasimulan, pwede na akong mag-resign as Ombudsman,” he added.

According to him, it would be easier if people start training young minds, as older people tend to resist change in values.


“Sa ngayon hindi ko inaasahan na magbabago tayo, but we start training the five years old, six, seven, eight, nine, hanggang sila’y magtapos ng kolehiyo, darating ang araw na ang ating makikitang mga bata iba na ang values,” Martires said.

Martires was appointed by the sixth Ombudsman by President Rodrigo Duterte last July 2018, replacing former Ombudsman Conchita Carpio Morales. Prior to his appointment, Martires was a former Associate Justice of the Supreme Court.

READ: Duterte names Martires new Ombudsman 

READ: Martires takes oath as new Ombudsman 

Copying other cultures

In his more than an hour and a half talk, Martires also commented on several things, including proposals to widen the scope of Republic Act 3019 or the Anti Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

“Dapat lawakan ‘yong ating batas, sa anti graft and corrupt practices, na isama ang pribadong sektor. This I intend to ask Congress to file or to pass a law that would include the private sector in our fight against corruption,” he told the audience.

Speaking of laws, he also lamented how laws in the Philippines were made in accordance with the culture of western countries like the United States. According to him, laws that prevent parents from disciplining their children like the old times are “demonic” in nature.

“Malimit akong pinapalo ng nanay ko, pero ngayon paluin mo ‘yong anak mo, sigurado ‘yong anak mo kukuhanin ng DSWD. Why do we have laws like these? These are demonic laws, taking away from the parents their right to discipline their children,” he said.

“Gumagaya tayo sa ibang bansa sa mga Amerikano, sa mga tiga-Europe na iba ang kultura. Iba ang kultura natin, iba ang kultura ng mga puti. Sa kakagaya natin, walang nangyayari sa atin,” he added.

And of demonic things, Martires also said that some modern aspects of life — like sex education and technology — also originated from the Devil.

“Ang mga magulang ngayon, naka-hawak sa cellphone pinapabayaan ang anak naglalaro. This is an invention of the Devil, most of our children are using phones, using them they could see triple X movies,” he insisted.

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“Sex education is also another work of the demon. Sex should not be taught in schools, it comes naturally. You know how to do it when you feel it, even a 10-year-old would really know what sex is about, you could feel it,” he claimed./ac

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