Former COA Head: Investigate all unliquidated cash advances
MANILA — Allegations of unliquidated cash advances to government agencies should be investigated, the former chief of the Audit Commission said on Wednesday in light of the president’s revelations of billions of funds allegedly unrecorded in previous administration.
“Sa palagay ko kasi pera din ‘yun, pera ng bayan’ yun. So dapat talagang balikan at hindi lang DILG (Department of the Interior and Local Government) at saka DOJ (Department of Justice). Lahat sana ng ahensiya ganun ang gawin nila whether in the previous administration or in the current administration, ”former COA president Grace Pulido-Tan told Teleradyo.
(I think because it’s public money. So it should be investigated and not just DILG and DOJ. But they should be investigated at all agencies …)
Tan, who led the audit body from 2011 to 2015, stressed that those with unpaid expenses should be held to account.
“Kailangan balikan at panagutin ‘yung mga hindi pa nakapag-liquidate. Singilin in other words,” she said.
(It should be reconsidered and those who failed to liquidate should be held accountable. Make them pay, in other words.)
In his last public speech, Duterte referred to the COA’s previous findings on unliquidated cash advances to DILG and DOJ. He made such a revelation in light of recent COA reports on alleged spending irregularities at various agencies under his administration.
Duterte said the DILG had 7 billion pesos in unliquidated cash transfers while the DOJ had 600 million pesos. The Home Department was then headed by former Senator Mar Roxas while Senator Leila de Lima, his staunch critic now detained for drug trafficking, headed the DOJ.
In the COA’s 2013 annual financial report, state auditors stated that DILG’s unliquidated fund transfers were “due to non-tracking of liquidations and submission of financial reports.”
In 2016, the Roxas camp explained that the funds were not liquidated as DILG projects were being implemented at that time.
For his part, De Lima said these accounts “have been settled and closed for a long time.”
“Duterte raises an issue with the COA’s reporting on DILG and DOJ under the PNoy administration is a clear case of bad leadership. I challenge Duterte to file cases with the ombudsman arising from these COA reports, ”the detained senator wrote in her recent dispatch from the camp. Burnt.
“He can’t because these accounts have been settled and closed for a long time. The COA knows that. That’s why no further cases have been made from these reports, and that’s why Duterte, with all his penchant for filing fabricated cases against me, has not been able to fabricate a case from those COA reports, ”she added.
In the Teleradyo interview, Tan noted that those who have already left office are presumed to be relieved of government responsibilities.
“Sa lahat ng opisina, ‘pag merong umaalis, can clearance dapat’ yan. Isa sa mga clearance is’ yung COA,” she said.
(In any office, when someone leaves, there should be clearance. One of those requirements is the COA.)
It also doesn’t necessarily mean that all unliquidated cash advances were initiated by the head of the office, but rather by a subordinate, Tan added.
She also reiterated that the shortcomings reported by the COA did not immediately amount to corruption.
“Hindi namin sinasabi can be korapsyon. The most recent report is also a nakikita called an audit, ”Tan said.
(We are not saying there is corruption. We are only reporting what we find in the audit.)
“We are not passing judgment on whether or not there is kasi nga hindi namin mandato ‘yun corruption (because that is not our mandate),” she added.
Teleradyo, Audit Commission, COA, Grace Pulido-Tan, Rodrigo Duterte, Mar Roxas, Leila de Lima, Ministry of Interior and Local Communities, DILG, Ministry of Justice, DOJ