DILG to local bets: Submit SOCE by June 9

The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) is reminding newly-elected local officials to submit their Statement of Contributions and Expenditures (SOCE) to the Commission on Elections (Comelec), before assuming office.

In a memorandum addressed to all newly-elected governors, mayors, vice-mayors, members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan/Panglungsod/Bayan, and Governor of the Autonomous Region for Muslim Mindanao (ARMM), DILG Secretary Mel Senen Sarmiento urged them to file their SOCE by June 9, and submit to the DILG a certification on SOCE compliance by June 17.

“Alinsunod sa batas, ang mga bagong halal na mga opisyal sa mga lokal na pamahalaan ay kinakailangang mag-file ng kani-kanilang mga SOCE bago pa man sila manumpa sa kanilang tungkulin, ” said Sarmiento.

Citing Republic Act (RA) No. 7166 otherwise known as “Synchronized National and Local Elections and for Electoral Reforms Act”, he said “No person elected to any public office shall enter or assume the duties of his office until he has filed the SOCE.”

Section 14 of the said law further states that: “Every candidate and treasurer of the political party shall, within thirty (30) days after the day of the election, file in duplicate with the offices of the Comelec the full, true and itemized statement of all contributions and expenditures in connection with the election.”

The DILG Secretary also said the Department and the Comelec had also forged memorandum of agreement in 2012 which states that the DILG or any of its attached agencies shall require any winning candidate to present a Certification from the COMELEC that he or she has satisfactorily complied with his or her obligation under Section 14 of Republic Act No. 7166 by filing his or her SOCE with the Comelec.

“In the absence of this certification, the winning candidate cannot enter into the execution of his or her office pursuant to Paragraph 2 of the same provision of the law,” he said.

Winning Governors, Vice Governors and Sangguniang Panlalawigan members are to submit their Comelec certifications to their DILG provincial directors; City Mayors, City Vice Mayors and Sangguniang Panlungsod members to their DILG City Directors; and Municipal Mayors, Municipal Vice Mayors and Sangguniang Bayan members to their DILG Municipal Local Government Operations Officers.

For the newly-elected local government officials who will be filing their SOCE for the first time and for those who have further questions about this mandate, they can get in touch with the DILG at Telephone Numbers (02) 925 0351 or (02) 928 9181 or email at blgspcmd@gmail.com. (PNA)

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