MANILA — Malacanang is not keen on establishing a new group that would conduct investigations on graft and corruption amid calls for lifestyle checks on several public officials.
In a briefing Wednesday, Presidential Spokesman Edwin Lacierda said the Office of the Ombudsman is enough for this purpose since it has proven itself.
He said the Office of the Ombudsman is mandated to “conduct all these measures necessary to ensure good governance and ethical practice among public officials.”
”There is no gap insofar as the performance of the Office of the Ombudsman is concerned. They are performing their duties very well, so, we will leave it at that,” he said.
Lacierda added that “it is better for an independent body to conduct this lifestyle check so as not to accuse anyone of favoritism or protection.”
Calls for the conduct of lifestyle check have been raised recently for Vice President Jejomar Binay and Philippine National Police (PNP) Chief Director General Alan Purisima.
Binay is being questioned for his involvement in the alleged over-priced parking building of the Makati City government as well as his alleged 350-hectare property in Rosario, Batangas, an aerial footage of which was presented during the hearing of the Senate Blue Ribbon Committee Wednesday.
Relatively, Purisima is being questioned for the donations he allegedly received for the construction of the PNP chief’s official residence in Camp Crame dubbed as the “White House”, and the manner on how he acquired a sports utility vehicle (SUV) and the mansion located in his 4.7-hectare property in San Leonardo, Nueva Ecija.