Will Filipinos see Duterte’s SALN? Roque says it’s up to the Ombudsman

10/23/2020 9:47:00 PM

‘We leave that to the Office of the Ombudsman which is a constitutional body tasked with implementation of our laws relating to public officers,’ says Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque

Salns, Harry Roque

WATCH: Despite President Rodrigo Duterte ’s vow of transparency, Malacañang on Monday, October 19, deferred to the Office of Ombudsman to decide whether or not it will release the Chief Executive’s SALN to the public. Read:

‘We leave that to the Office of the Ombudsman which is a constitutional body tasked with implementation of our laws relating to public officers,’ says Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque

Sofia TomacruzDespite President Rodrigo Duterte’s vow of transparency, Malacañang on Monday, October 19, left to the Office of Ombudsman the decision on whether or not to release to the public the Chief Executive’s Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALNs).

“We leave that to the Office of the Ombudsman which is a constitutional body tasked with implementation of our laws relating to public officers,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque told reporters during a virtual press briefing.Roque had been asked to state categorically whether or not Malacañang would share Duterte’s SALNs, which have remained a secret since 2018.

Read more: Rappler »

Less vaccine wastage if those with comorbidities got 2nd booster earlier – expert

'There was some element of delay on the part of the DOH to implement the second booster for those with comorbidities,' says infectious diseases specialist Dr. Rontgene Solante Read more >>

'Law is a Law....' That's a big bullshit! Inutil's Administration is a BIG stupid, bullshit!!! Bahala na siya sa buhay niya kung ayaw niyang ilabas yun. Lawyer daw siya, alam niya batas. Do as I say not as I do - duterte inutil

Roque to Congress: Consult Palace on increasing budget for vaccines - Manila BulletinAny congressional move to raise the proposed 2021 budget for the coronavirus vaccine should at least be done in consultation with the Executive branch, according to a Palace official. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said while they respect Congress’ wisdom to hike the vaccine budget for the next year, the issue […]

Rappler @rapplerdotcom Harry Roque virtual press briefing | Thursday, October 22

Rappler @rapplerdotcom Harry Roque virtual press briefing | Thursday, October 22

PH allows entry of foreigners with investor, work visas starting November 1The IATF has also lifted the pre-boarding testing requirement for outbound Filipinos. Philippines: The number one exporter of Covid-19.

Roque to Congress: Consult Palace on increasing budget for vaccines - Manila BulletinAny congressional move to raise the proposed 2021 budget for the coronavirus vaccine should at least be done in consultation with the Executive branch, according to a Palace official. Presidential spokesman Harry Roque said while they respect Congress’ wisdom to hike the vaccine budget for the next year, the issue […]

Filipinos urged to apply for ‘Connections’ grant - Manila BulletinThe British Council, the United Kingdom’s international organization for cultural relations and educational opportunities, is enjoining Filipinos and Southeast Asian artists, arts professionals, collectives, hubs, and researchers to apply in the latest round of the Connections Through Culture grants.

Oct 19, 2020 5:10 PM PHT Sofia Tomacruz Despite President Rodrigo Duterte’s vow of transparency, Malacañang on Monday, October 19, left to the Office of Ombudsman the decision on whether or not to release to the public the Chief Executive’s Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALNs).Any congressional move to raise the proposed 2021 budget for the coronavirus vaccine should at least be done in consultation with the Executive branch, according to a Palace official...

“We leave that to the Office of the Ombudsman which is a constitutional body tasked with implementation of our laws relating to public officers,” Presidential Spokesperson Harry Roque told reporters during a virtual press briefing. Roque had been asked to state categorically whether or not Malacañang would share Duterte’s SALNs, which have remained a secret since 2018. “The power of purse is vested in Congress. Roque’s latest remarks are a departure from previous statements made on the issue last September, when he said he was not sure if Duterte would proactively release these two SALNs to the media or the public. At the time, Roque said he would ask the Office of the Executive Secretary if the President's SALNs will be released since “whether or not it will be made public is outside of the jurisdiction of my office. “So we hope that Congress will at least confer with the Executive kung saan nila kukunin iyong pondo para itaas ang budget for the vaccine (on where the funds will be obtained to raise the budget for the vaccine),” he added." Under the Ombudsman's new rules on SALNs, only 3 types of persons can receive a copy of officials' SALNs: The official who filed the SALN or a duly authorized representative A requester acting on a court order in relation to a pending case The Office of the Ombudsman's Field Investigation Office for the purpose of conducting fact-finding investigation This means that the public and media can only access Duterte’s SALN if he decides to make it public, or if those who have a copy release it.

Why does this matter? All post-Marcos presidents have released their SALNs to the public in the interest of being transparent and accountable. “We join Congress in our desire that we should have sufficient funds to pay for the vaccine, which according po to (Philippine) Ambassador (to China) Chito (Sta. Experts earlier warned that restricting public access to SALNs may increase impunity among officials since discrepancies in their wealth may no longer be scrutinized for possible red flags and corruption. A recent report by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ) said that with the public being unable to access the President’s SALN, “Duterte is breaking a long tradition of presidents making their annual wealth disclosures public year after year. The House of Representatives has reportedly introduced several amendments to its approved 2021 national budget, including a higher budget for the purchase of COVID vaccines to P8 billion.” PCIJ likewise said in 2019 that, ”This would be the first time in the last 30 years that a President has not released his or her SALN.” Shielded by Ombudsman? On Monday, Roque denied the new Ombudsman rules would be a blow to transparency but maintained Malacañang was bound by its guidelines.5 trillion national budget proposal, at least P2.

“ Hindi naman po siguro dahil may bago pong guidelines na sinusunod ang Office of the Ombudsman. Siguro naman po dahil… constitutional body yung ombudsman ay dapat naman po sundin natin yung kanilang guidelines ," he said. House Majority Leader Martin Romualdez, who leads a small group in charge of amendments to the budget bill, said the additional P5. (I don't think so, since there are new guidelines that the Office of the Ombudsman is following. The Ombudsman is a constitutional body so we should follow their guidelines. “This is to support President Rodrigo Duterte’s program to strengthen the country’s health care system.) Despite concerns raised over the move, Malacañang earlier told the public to .