March 16, 2012 · Posted in: General
BUDGET SECRETARY Florencio Abad acknowledged that he has only been listing the assessed values of his real properties in his statements of assets, liabilities, and net worth (SALN), and pledged to review his previous SALNs and include the acquisition costs of his properties “in the interest of transparency.”
Abad made the statement in a press release issued by his office after a story published by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism pointed out that some senior officers of the Aquino administration have not been fully disclosing all the details required by law in the filling out of their SALNs.
The SALN issue gained even greater prominence with the ongoing impeachment trial of Supreme Court Chief Justice Renato Corona for alleged culpable violations of the Constitution and betrayal of the public trust. Article 2 of the impeachment complaint charged Corona of failure to fully and accurately disclose his SALN to the public.
Interestingly, the PCIJ story on the SALN was published on Thursday, the same day that impeachment prosecutors complained before the court that Corona had not been disclosing the acquisition costs of his real properties. In the new SALN form, public officials are required to disclose, not just the fair market value and assessed value of their real properties, but the acquisition value as well.
The full press statement of Budget Secretary Abad follows.
STATEMENT BY SECRETARY FLORENCIO B. ABAD ON HIS STATEMENT OF ASSETS, LIABILITIES AND NET WORTH
“Since I joined the Government, I have faithfully submitted my Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN). My public service records—whether in Congress or Cabinet—will bear me out that I never missed a year of filing my SALN. Everything I own and their corresponding value—whether real property, investments or even artwork and books—has been faithfully disclosed in my SALN.”
“I acknowledge though that with respect to my real properties, I have declared their value based on the assessed value, which has been the basis of the taxes I have paid against these. In all my years in public service, my attention has never been called to this, whether by the Civil Service Commission, the Office of the Ombudsman or the Commission on Appointments.
“In the interest of transparency, I will review my previous SALNs and include the acquisition cost and the fair market value, to the extent that the pertinent documents are still available. This will also be reflected in the SALN that I will file in April for year 2011.”