DILG says 85% of ‘Yolanda’ fund already liquidated
MANILA, Philippines – The Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) said Friday that about P3.455 billion or 85 percent of the total P4.055 billion funds for the repair and reconstruction of government facilities ravaged by Typhoon “Yolanda” have already been liquidated.
This follows the 2018 report of the Commission of Audit (COA) that earlier flagged the DILG for its failure to liquidate P1.059 billion of funds under the Recovery Assistance for Yolanda (RAY).
Started in 2014, the RAY project covers the repair and reconstruction of government facilities damaged by the supertyphoon. Facilities include municipal halls, public markets, civic centers, village facilities, and similar infrastructure.
But according to Interior Secretary Eduardo Año, only 15 percent or P600.67 million of the funds remain unliquidated as of July 4, 2019, since the 2018 COA report did not cover the accomplishment for this year.
“There have been significant accomplishments in the implementation of the Yolanda projects in the concerned local government units (LGUs) from January to June this year that were not captured in the Commission on Audit report whose cutoff date is December 31, 2018,” Año said in a statement.
COA said the unliquidated funds cover over P219 million allocated to the Department of Public Works and Highways (DPWH) and over P839 million to LGUs for the project.
Año clarified that though the funds were appropriated by the Congress to the DILG, it has already been transferred to the DPWH and LGUs, which then have the task to liquidate the funds for being the implementing agencies.
“Nevertheless, we are still actively and continuously monitoring and coordinating with the DPWH and LGUs to fast track the liquidation of the funds entrusted to them,” he said.
He explained the remaining unliquidated funds are mostly from ongoing projects currently being implemented by LGUs, and that “the subsequent submission of liquidation reports will, of course, depend on the period of implementation.”
“The thousands of RAY projects were started and completed in varying periods reckoned on the dates the funds were released by the Department of Budget and Management (DBM),” he said.
To date, Año said the DPWH has completed all of its 25 RAY projects, while the LGUs have completed 4,403 projects. There are currently 370 projects being implemented, 25 on procurement process, and six on preparation of documentary requirements.
While all projects of the DPWH have been completed, he said it is still awaiting liquidation reports from regional field offices before it can forward its consolidated report to the DILG.
To help fast track the use of funds for the projects by the LGUs, Año said the DILG will send finance monitoring and tracking teams, and engineers and accounting staff to localities affected by “Yolanda” that have already completed their projects.
He said this action will be coordinated with the regional offices of COA. (Editor: Jonathan P. Vicente)
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