Saturday July 21, 2018

Ombudsman sanctions ex-Eastern Samar mayor

CATBALOGAN CITY -- The Office of the Ombudsman has suspended Balangiga, Samar, former mayor Viscuso De Lira over discrepancies in his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN).

The Ombudsman sanctioned De Lira with six-month suspension without pay for violating Section 11 of Republic Act 6713, otherwise known as the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public Officials and Employees.

In view of his separation from office, however, the penalty is convertible to a fine equivalent to his salary for six months.

Ombudsman investigators found out that in the SALN filed by De Lira in 2013, he undervalued his 2010 Nissan Patrol Super Safari by declaring its value as only P1,800,000 when its actual price is P3,048,480.

Also, De Lira failed to declare his ownership over 10 high-powered firearms in his 2011 to 2013 SALNs.

In a separate resolution of the case, the Ombudsman earlier indicted Lira and his wife, Emelita De Lira, for three counts of perjury and three counts of violation of Section 8, RA 6713.

Efforts were made to contact the De Lira couple but to no avail.

The Code of Conduct obliges every public official and employee to accomplish and submit declarations under oath of, and the public has the right to know about their assets, liabilities and net worth and financial and business interest, including those of their spouse and of unmarried children under 18 years of age living in their households.

Failure to do so shall be punished with a fine not exceeding the equivalent of six months’ salary or suspension not exceeding one year. (SunStar Philippines)