COA: Incomplete toilets cost P295.86 million

Gillan Ropero, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 02 2018 06:58 PM | Updated as of Aug 02 2018 10:55 PM

MANILA - A government toilet facilities improvement project, which includes the unfinished "three-in-one" toilet at a train station in Manila that recently went viral on social media, cost P295.857 million, the Commission on Audit (COA) said in its annual report.

In its 2017 audit report, COA reiterated its findings last 2014 and 2015 on the incomplete Kayo ang Boss Ko (KBK) Toilet Facilities Improvement Project and said the Department of Transportation (DOTr) has yet to issue an inventory report.

"No inventory report on used and unused construction materials was provided to COA," the report read.

The COA added that only four out of 45 memoranda of agreement (MOA) forwarded to DOTr Project Management Units were signed as of Feb. 22, 2018.

"[T]he remaining 41 MOAs remained unacted [on] by the recipients," it said.

In 2012, the Aquino administration launched the project to rehabilitate and build some 1,000 toilets in airports, piers and train stations. 

It, however, only had a delivery rate of 53.17 percent as of 2016 due to "poor project management, project termination and abandonment by contractors."

The COA added that the contracts for the project's civil works and supply of materials were awarded to 17 different contractors and 3 suppliers instead of a straight contract basis.

There were also no clear guidelines issued for the custody, accountability, and reporting requirements for the construction materials, it said.

"Thus actual deliveries to the regions amounting to P74,849,063.97 and issuance and utilization thereof including stocks on hand were not fully accounted for, thus exposing government resources to potential loss and wastage," the COA said.

The agency urged DOTr to conduct an independent probe and file appropriate legal actions against transportation officials "who are responsible/accountable for the lapses in procurement and project management which could result in wastage of government funds, if warranted by evidence."

The DOTr earlier pinned the blame at KBK Facilities for the substandard project, which it said was among those procured by the then Department of Transportation and Communication (DOTC) in 2012.

"PNR (Philippine National Railways) is recommending to DOTr blacklisting proceedings for the KBK contractors and officially handover the project to PNR for proper closure of the project," it said in a recent Facebook post.

"The project was procured by DOTC separately, one for civil works and the other for supply of the materials, hence, the project was not implemented due to absence of coordination even after the end of the term of the past administration."

The DOTr explained that since the project was not turned over to the PNR, the train line's management could not assume responsibility for repairs and maintenance.

A total of 20 toilet facilities were given to PNR in different stations from Metro Manila to Bicol: Tutuban, Blumentritt, Laon-Laan, España, Sta.Mesa, Pandacan, Pasay Road, EDSA, FTI, Bicutan, Sucat, Calamba, San Pablo, Lucena, Tagkawayan, Sipocot, Naga, Iriga, Ligao and Legazpi.