Duterte’s non-disclosure of SALN, an insult to poor Filipinos – Anakpawis
Manila, Philippines – Amid President Rodrigo Duterte’s continued non-disclosure of his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) for 2018, the Anakpawis Party-list branded it as an insult to poor sectors who are bearing the brunt of the chronic economic crisis and backtracking from the open government doctrine which is a concept associated to democratic reforms.
“While Duterte increases his wealth, peasants and workers are thrown into bankruptcy and indebtedness, landlessness, displacement, ‘endo’ and slave-like wage levels and other miseries, mainly triggered by his economic policies such as the Tax Reform for Acceleration and Inclusion Law, Rice Liberalization Law and perpetuation of contractualization of labor and depressed wages. But here, we are witnessing the Office of the President-passing the ball to the-Ombudsman spectacle of who should be publishing his SALN,” former Anakpawis lawmaker Ariel “Ka Ayik” Casilao said in a press statement.
He said that this does not change the fact that Duterte failed to commit to transparency and on the track of undermining democratic governance in the country. It was the Office of the President who made Duterte’s SALN for 2017 available to the mass media.
“They were able to do for 2017, but chose not to for 2018. This continued failure to transparency and accountability only fortifies the perception that there was an increase in his net worth, at an immoral scale,” he stressed.
Based on an article by the Philippine Center for Investigative Journalism (PCIJ), there was a near 20% increase on Duterte’s net worth, from P24 million in June 2016 to P28.54 million by the end of 2017. Based on this, he was approximately worth more than P78,000 per day. While based on the 2015 Family Income and Expenditure Survey (FIES) of the Philippine Statistics Authority (PSA), more than 11.3 million families or around 56 million Filipinos live under a daily household income of P522.
“We have a president whose daily worth is about 150 times of the household incomes of half of the total number of Filipino families, and that his economic policies were disparaging to the poor peasant and worker sectors, still he had the gall to hide the state of his wealth from the very people he is accountable to,” the former lawmaker expounded.
He claimed that Duterte is grossly mistaken if he considers hiding the real state of his wealth is at his best interest.
“Only tyrants and corrupt officials conceal the state of their wealth. The Filipino people already had endured the Marcos dictatorship who plundered the public coffers. Hidden or ill-gotten wealth is a manifestation of graft and corruption, despotism and inconsistent with transparent and democratic governance. On the each day that passes by with Duterte hiding his wealth, he further isolates himself from the people and erodes his moral entitlement to remain as president,” he ended. ###