Martires stops lifestyle checks on public officials
MANILA, Philippines — Ombudsman Samuel Martires revealed on Tuesday that he has stopped the conduct of lifestyle checks on public officials.
During the budget hearing of the Ombudsman in the House of Representatives, Martires said he was supposed to propose Congress amendments to Republic Act 6713, which establishes the code of conduct and ethical standards for government employees and officials.
He said there are some provisions in the law that are “vague” and illogical.
“Ngayong ako’y nag-assume bilang Ombudsman, pinatigil ko na muna ‘yung lifestyle check dahil matagal na akong may question, may duda ako sa provision ng batas tungkol sa lifestyle checks,” he said.
“Naabutan lang kami ng pandemic na ito but I was about to propose to Congress to amend RA 6713 because there are really provisions there na kung hindi malabo, parang walang hulog sa logic,” Martires added.
Under RA 6713, “public officials and employees and their families shall lead modest lives appropriate to their positions and income” and that “they should not indulge in extravagant or ostentatious display of wealth in any form.”
Martires insisted that the income of the public official does not automatically mean that his way of living translates to as such.
“Marami sa atin mahilig magdamit ng mga signature pero sinasantabi yung ibang pangangailangan. So sino tayo para sabihin na bakit yan ang mga bags luis vuitton, ano ang pakialam natin sa buhay ng may buhay kung hindi naman siya nagnanakaw?” he said.
“Ano ang pakialam natin sa buhay ng may buhay kung wala sya inaagrabyado, kung siya ay nangungutang lang para masunod yung layaw niya,” he added.
“We have to redefine what is living beyond your means. What is simple living to me may not be simple living to you or anyone.”
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