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COA should not audit DAP, says Phl senator
The Supreme Court has recently struck down the essential provisions of the DAP as unconstitutional.
The lawmaker said that though the COA is constitutionally mandated to examine and settle all accounts of the government, its findings will be suspicious and will be regarded with partiality as the commission is also a recipient of the DAP funds.
Estrada recalled that during his interrogation of the 2014 budget for the COA, Chairperson Grace Pulido-Tan admitted that they requested and received funds from the Department of Budget and Management (DBM) to finance the modernization program of the commission.
A total of 143 million which was sourced from the DAP was given to the COA and were used for information technology infrastructure (P68,352,000), installation of closed-circuit television (P2,079,000), hiring of litigation experts and legal and management consultants (P4,607,000), and purchase of service vehicles (P5,115,000).
"Did these COA 'projects' help boost the economy, as the DAP they say was intended for fast moving projects and to pump prime the economy?" Jinggoy wondered.
The senator further said that since the DAP spending was made outside the enacted budget approved by Congress no one knows how much taxpayer's money was channeled through the said unconstitutional mechanism.
"I think we can all agree that the people have the right to know how public funds were used, how much has been poured into the DAP, what projects were funded using this scheme, and whether these projects were completed or not," Estrada said.