Escudero dares fellow candidates to submit waiver on secrecy of bank deposits

April 26, 2013 10:25 pm 

MANILA, April 25 – Reelectionist Sen. Francis Escudero reiterated Thursday his challenge to fellow candidates to execute bank secrecy waivers to give the Ombudsman a free hand to look into questionable bank accounts both here and overseas.

In line with his transparency challenge, Escudero submitted to the Senate secretary his statement of assets, liabilities and net worth (SALN) and with it a signed waiver on secrecy of his bank deposits.

”Even in the absence of a law, candidates particularly those running for Senate seats have the obligation to execute bank secrecy waivers to observe the standard that was applied to former Chief Justice Renato Corona by the Senate impeachment court in issuing a guilty verdict that led to Corona’s removal,” Escudero said in the weekly Kapihan sa Senado media forum.

Escudero said legislators and those aspiring to be members of Congress would adhere to the principles of transparency by filing their SALN and with it a waiver on secrecy of bank accounts.

He said candidates for elective positions should make it a commitment to Filipino voters the execution of the secrecy waiver as proof of their honest intent in rendering public service and as an assurance against theft of public funds.

“The challenge on transparency should not be treated as child’s play. Those who consider themselves as leaders do not need to be prodded to do something right,” Escudero said.

“I think signing the secrecy waiver is an obligation that each of us should do in the coming days prior to the elections. Those who have nothing to hide has nothing to fear from my transparency challenge,” he added.

The Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees (RA 6713) requires all government officials and personnel to submit sworn SALN documents within 30 days after assuming office and not later than April 30 every year thereafter. (PNA)

HBC/JFM

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