DPWH-BCDEO official faces graft charges

BAGUIO CITY – A ranking official of the Department of Public Works and Highways – Baguio City District Engineering Office (DPWH-BCDEO) was charged before the Office of the Ombudsman for his alleged failure to submit his Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth (SALN) for 2012 and his alleged failure to declare his acquired properties in his submitted SALNs.

In a 2-page affidavit complaint, Salvador Liked, Secretary-General of the Cordillera chapter of the Citizens Crime Watch (CCW-CAR), an anticrime and corruption watchdog in the region, claimed that based on the certification issued by the records officer of the Deputy Ombudsman for Luzon dated May 3, 2018, DPWH-BCDEO District Engineer Rene Zarate failed to submit his SALN for the year 2012 which is in violation of Section 8 of Republic Act (RA) 6713 or the Code of Conduct and Ethical Standards for Public officials and Employees in relation to Section 7 of RA 3019 or the Anti-Graft and Corrupt Practices Act.

Liked accused Zarate of allegedly failing to declare his acquisition of a residential house and lot located at Mines View, Baguio City and a house and lot in Burgos, La Union in 2000.

He noted that based on Zarate’s SALN for the years 2008, 2009, 2010 and 2011, he did not declare any kind of real property by marking n/a the blank provided for the purpose, instead of indicating his previous acquisitions in the same.

Section 7 of RA 3019 provides every public officer and within the month of every January thereafter, as well as upon the expiration of his term of office, or upon his resignation or separation from office, shall prepare and file with the office of the corresponding department head, or in the case of head department or chief of an independent office with the Office of the President, or in the case of the member of Congress and the officials and employees thereof, with the Office of the Secretary of the corresponding House, a true detailed and sworn Statement of Assets and liabilities, including a statement of the amounts and source of his or her income, the amounts of his personal and family expenses and amount of income taxes paid for the next preceding calendar year; provided, that public officers assuming office less than two months before the end of the calendar year, may file their statements in the following months of January.

Liked accused Zarate of allegedly violating the aforementioned provision of the law since he became employed at the DPWH-BCDEO in Baguio City by failing to submit his SALN for the year 2012 and allegedly failing to declare his acquired properties in his submitted SALNs.

Liked requested the records officer of the Ombudsman regarding the submissions made by Zarate on his SALNs on April 2, 2018 and that the records officer issued a certification dated May 3, 2018 regarding Zarate’s alleged failure to submit his SALN for the year 2012 although his other SALNs were submitted to the concerned office.

Herald Express tried to get in touch with Zarate for his comments regarding the filing of the case against him but he could not be reached as of press time.

By HENT

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