Ombudsman indicts ex-Lanao del Sur mayor for non-filing of SALNs
22 January 2018
The Office of the Ombudsman indicted former Mayor Rasmia Macabago of Saguiran, Lanao del Sur, with three counts of violation of Section 8 of Republic Act No. 6713 (Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees) due to the non-filing of her Statements of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALNs) from 2007 to 2010.
A certification dated 20 October 2016 issued by the Office of the Deputy Ombudsman for Mindanao was presented stating that “there are no available SALNs on file of respondent.”
Macabago claimed in her counter-affidavit “that she did not know that she ought to file a SALN since she did not know of any local officials who filed the same.”
In its Resolution, the Office of the Ombudsman ruled that “this Area Office’s Certification affirming the non-availability of respondent’s SALNs from CYs 2007 to 2010, coupled with her admission, suffices to indict respondent for violation of R.A. No. 6713.”
“That respondent did not know of her duty to file her SALN cannot be given credence, as taking part of public service carries with the bounden duty to uphold the law,” the Resolution stated while adding that “the filing of SALNs of every public official or government employee cannot be overemphasized [as i]t is the public’s means of monitoring the income and lifestyle of public officials and employees in compliance with the constitutional policy on public accountability and to ensure that all government employees and officials lead just and modest lives.”
Section 8 of R.A. No. 6713 states that all public officials and employees have an obligation to accomplish and submit declarations under oath of their assets, liabilities, net worth and financial and business interests including those of their spouses and of unmarried children under eighteen (18) years of age living in their households. ###