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Ping smells double standard in admin’s anti-corruption drive; Parang ningas-kugon

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Lip service.

This may be what becomes of the administration’s promise to fight corruption if it ignores reports of irregularities by the Commission on Audit, Sen. Panfilo Lacson said Saturday.

In a post on his Twitter account, Lacson said an adverse COA report should be treated as a motive to take “positive action.”

“Any administration that says it is serious in fighting corruption must treat an adverse COA report as a good initial source of motive power to take positive action. Ignoring the report is to pay lip service,” he said.

Earlier, the COA recommended the filing of charges against officials of the Presidential Communications Operations Office over irregular disbursements for the country’s hosting of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations Summit in 2017.

In its audit report for 2017, the COA found 17.7 percent or P38.8 million of the P219.24-million ASEAN fund was questionable.

The COA particularly questioned the PCOO’s spending for IT equipment such as laptops, desktops, camersa and camera lenses.

The report also found that purchase orders of payments amounting to P27.5 million and 7.26 million for various goods/services and rental of passenger vans, respectively were split despite being purchased or leased on the same date or time.

COA said splitting deprived the agency of the chance to take advantage of possible bulk discounts or lowest responsive offer if the procurements were done through public bidding.

Meanwhile, the COA also flagged the purchase by the Philippine National Police of some P1.89 billion worth of patrol vehicles manufactured by Mahindra in 2015.

In its 2017 audit report, COA raised questions about the acquisition of the vehicles as it noted that changes in the specifications of the type and make of the vehicles resulted in the PNP ordering inferior standard patrol vehicles.

The COA also noted the PNP scholarship program for children of policemen, firemen, and jail guards killed in the line of duty has not been “fairly and equitably” implemented.