Solon: Ombudsman ‘open’ to revise circular limiting access to SALN of gov’t execs
MANILA, Philippines — The Office of the Ombudsman is “open for revision” of the circular which limits access to the Statement of Assets, Liabilities, and Net Worth (SALN) of government officials, a lawmaker said Friday.
Zamboanga del Norte 1st District Rep. Romeo Jalosjos, who was sponsoring the budget of the Office of the Ombudsman, made the remark when asked about Memorandum Circular No. 1 signed by Ombudsman Samuel Martires.
“The Ombudsman is open for revision of Circular No. 1. If you have suggestions or comments for the revision, the Ombudsman is also open for your inquiries and suggestions,” Jalosjos said.
Jalosjos said the Ombudsman can start reviewing the circular once suggestions on the revised policy are submitted by lawmakers.
Under the memorandum dated September 2020, SALNs will be released only in three situations:
• if the declarant, meaning the government official who filed it and his or her official representative made a request;
• if it is legally ordered by the court in relation to a pending case
• if the request is made through the Office of the Ombudsman’s field investigation office for the purpose of a fact-finding probe
“In all other instances, no SALN will be furnished to the requester unless he/she presents a notarized letter of authority from the declarant allowing the release of the requested SALN,” the memorandum said.
SALNs have been considered crucial in identifying possible graft and corruption, as it would show whether a public official’s wealth and liabilities correspond to his or her salary and other ventures while in office.
Subscribe to our daily newsletter
Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.