CoA flags PCGG advances for condo repairs

THE COMMISSION on Audit (CoA) has flagged the Presidential Commission on Good Government (PCGG) for using cash advances as payment for the repair and development of six condominium units.

The PCGG released P1.6 million worth of cash advances as payment for the renovation of the units, which is illegal, state auditors said in a report.

The agency created in 1986 to go after the alleged ill-gotten wealth of the late dictator Ferdinand E. Marcos, Sr. and his cronies also failed to provide detailed engineering plans for the project, CoA said.

“Various expenses incurred for the repair and improvement of six condominium units at Galeria de Magallanes aggregating ₱1.614 million as of Aug. 31, 2023, were paid through cash advances,” it said.

“[This is] not in accordance with (a) CoA circular… prohibiting the grant of cash advance for payments on account of infrastructure projects,” according to the report.

The PCGG did not reply to a Facebook Messenger chat and e-mail seeking comment.

The agency also granted a cash advance worth P500,000 to a consultant to appraise sequestered and surrendered properties in Cavite, CoA said.

“[This] is beyond the allowable limit of 15% of the total contract price,” CoA said. “Moreover, the advance payment was not requested in writing by the consultant and not secured by an irrevocable standby letter.”

State auditors also flagged the PCGG’s purchase of building materials after it exceeded the initial budget allocated for the contract by P1,860.

“The purchase order for the procurement of various construction materials amounting to P306,610 was questionable as the same exceeded the approved budget for the contract of P304,750,” CoA said in the report.

It also noted that the bid was awarded to the second-lowest calculated bidder “for no good reason.” “Had the award of contract been made to the lowest bidder, the agency could have saved at least P53,355,” state auditors said. — Kenneth Christiane L. Basilio