Ex-COA head says auditor who worked on DOH report died of heart attack


Posted at Aug 17 2021 09:58 PM | Updated as of Aug 17 2021 10:29 PM

MANILA - Former Commission on Audit commissioner Heidi Mendoza on Tuesday revealed that her colleague in COA recently suffered from a heart attack.

In a Facebook post, Mendoza said she received news that lawyer and state auditor Jake Cimafranca died of heart attack last August 4. 

However, she posted about it in time for Cimafranca's burial Tuesday.

"Today I weep for my former colleague. A COA-UN auditor who just died of heart attack. He is the auditor behind DoH report. Stress can kill, please let us offer a minute of prayer!" Mendoza said in her post.

Cimafranca was the leader of the team behind the Department of Health audit, which drew questions on how the health department used over P67 billion in COVID-19 funds.

"Sa Team Leader ng DoH, Jake, may the heaven open up and receive your soul together with all our prayers for the country and the institution we served," Mendoza added.

In an interview on Teleradyo, Mendoza said she is merely emphasizing the fact that state auditors suffer from a lot of stress due to their job.

"Gusto ko lang po i-highlight sa public, 'yung stressful na trabaho ng auditor na gumagawa ng tamang trabaho," she said.

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Mendoza's post about Cimafranca's death came a day after President Rodrigo Duterte told the members of his Cabinet to just follow his orders and ignore COA reports.

In the same recorded message late Monday, Duterte defended the DOH for the P67 billion COA-flagged funds.

The DOH has denied corruption allegations, and said the amount is fully accounted for. 

The DOH also said it is nearing completion of documents in response to state auditors, but there are still units in the agency that have yet to complete required papers.