COA flags office over overstocking supplies, unliquidated travel allowances

Adrian Ayalin, ABS-CBN News

Posted at Aug 31 2021 06:34 PM

Commission on Audit, Quezon City.
Commission on Audit, Quezon City. Jonathan Cellona, ABS-CBN News/File

MANILA — The Commission on Audit (COA) has flagged its own central office over P12.387 million in unliquidated foreign and local travel allowances of its officers and employees. 

In the 2020 audit report on the COA, it was also noted that cash advances were granted to accountable officers despite non-liquidation of their previous cash advances. 

The report said that the non-liquidation of funds within deadlines violates COA Circular No. 97-002 which provides for guidelines on the granting of cash advances. 

“Although the accounting office has been monitoring these cash advances, some officials and employees were still able to obtain additional cash advance/s even without liquidating their previous cash advance,” the audit team said. 

COA management told the auditors that P7.663 million have been liquidated as of April 27, 201.

“The grant of cash advances even if previous cash advances were not liquidated yet was due to the continuous engagement of United Nations auditors which makes it impossible for them to liquidate immediately the previous cash advances granted,” the COA management told the audit team. 

Also flagged by the audit team was the overstocking of COA supplies amounting to P9.074 million, resulting to possible wastage of government resources through obsolescence.

The report noted that the COA management will consider the recommendations of the audit team to avoid wastage.

The 2020 audit report also stated that there was possible loss of P3.38 million in government funds after a contractor failed to complete and subsequently terminated the construction of the Regional Training Center and Dormitory Building Phase 1 in the Cordillera Administrative Region. 

The management however told the audit team that they already issued a letter to the contractor informing them of the total receivable due from them.

'SYSTEM THAT WORKS'

In a Facebook post, former COA commissioner Jose Fabia said that the audit report is the best evidence that agency, which audits itself, has a system that works.

“As I said before, COA audits COA. Its auditors do their job with competence, integrity and objectivity... Walang kinikilingan, marunong pumuna, marunong magturo at kayang baguhin ang dapat baguhin,” Fabia said.

"This audit report is the best evidence that the Commission on Audit has a system that works," he added.

President Rodrigo Duterte earlier criticized the COA for the deficiencies found in various government agencies.

The President also questioned "who audits COA," adding he would do the commission's job if he gets elected as vice president in 2022.