Senate Secretary lawyer Myra Villarica has issued stringent guidelines for public access to the Statement of Assets, Liabilities and Net Worth of senators.
If under previous Senate leaderships getting a copy of the SALNs was as easy as making a verbal request to the Senate secretary, obtaining one now directs requesting parties to fill up a Summary Request Form (SRF) which has to be notarized by a lawyer before it is accepted by the Office of the Secretary.
Aside from filling up the form and having it subscribed before a notary lawyer, the SRF requires members of the media to attach a proof of media affiliation and certification of accreditation of media organization as a legitimate media practitioners.
For students, they need to present a photocopy of their school ID and a certification from the educational institution that the student is currently enrolled, and another certification from the school or teacher that the request is for an academic paper or thesis that is required either by the school or teacher.
The SRF likewise asks applicants to list down the purpose for the request, strictly reminding parties that general purposes like “public interest/public concern” are not acceptable as valid reasons to acquire a copy of the SALNs.
All parties requesting copies of the SALNs are also asked to undertake that the documents shall be: used only for the purpose stated; not be disclosed or used for any purpose contrary to moral or public policy; not be used or disclosed for any commercial purpose other than by news and/or communications media for dissemination to the general public; not be disclosed, lent, shown or reproduced for distribution to other individuals, groups or organizations; not be used or disclosed to compromise the legislative integrity of the Senate; not be used to influence the enactment or non-enactment of any legislative document or process for personal gain; and that the request does not constitute an unwarranted invasion of personal privacy.