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Previous San Juan City admin left nearly P1B debt – Zamora

/ 02:59 PM July 08, 2019

MANILA, Philippines — The administration of former San Juan City Mayor Guia Gomez has left the local government in debt by close to P1 billion.

Newly-installed San Juan City Mayor Francisco Zamora disclosed this Monday, as he explained the local government unit’s financial standing upon turnover last June 30.

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“Tayo pong lahat ay may malaking utang na minana, sa kasamaang palad, halos isang bilyon po ang naiwang pagkakautang ng nakaraang adminstrasyon sa ating lahat,” San Juan City Mayor Francis Zamora said after the flag raising ceremony at the city hall.

Citing documents from the city’s finance committee, Zamora said the nearly P1 billion-debt came from the construction of the San Juan City Hall and San Juan Medical Center.

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Zamora said more than P731 million was spent in the construction of the San Juan City Hall:

  • Construction cost – P520 million
  • Variation order – P167 million
  • Furniture and fixtures – 43 million

On the other hand, he added, the construction of the San Juan Medical Center amounted to over P500 million:

  • Architectural design – P16 million
  • Construction cost – P300 million
  • Other project components – 184 million

“Ang total principal loan amount para sa San Juan Medical Center at City Hall ay mahigit P1.2 billion pesos,” Zamora said.

And based on records turned over to his office, San Juan City was able to pay a portion of the amount but still has an outstanding balance of 659 million pesos as of June 30, 2019. Zamora assumed office on July 1.

“Ngunit ito ay principal pa lamang, kung isasama po natin ang interes na humigit kumulang P200 million, ang ating utang ay aabot halos sa isang bilyon piso,” Zamora pointed out.

In the negative

“Ang katotohanan po… negative ang ating projected year-end cash position. Ang nai-turn over po satin na isang cheque ay nagkakahalagang P1.3 billion,” Zamora said.

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“Ngunit nais po natin klaruhin na ito ay hindi savings na iniwan para satin, dahil ito po ay nakalaan na sa mga bayarin mula July 1 hanggang December 31, 2019,” he added.

According to Zamora, from the P1.3 billion turned over fund nearly P300 million was earmarked for the “trust fund barangay” and the special education fund while P44 million was allotted to pay for long-term loans from July 1 until the end of 2019.

“Ang total general fund ay mahigit lamang P1 bilyon ngunit ang 2019 payables ay nagkakahalaga ng mahigit P600 million, kaya ang kabuuan ng naiwang pondo para sa 2019 ay humigit kumulang P300 million na lamang,” he explained.

“Kung idadagdag natin ang mahigit P700 million na projected income para sa July hanggang December 2019, tayo ay magkakaroon ng total na projected fund balance na mahigit P1 bilyon, ngunit ang total projected expense mula July hanggang December 2019 – base sa 2019 budget na ipinasa – ay mahigit P1.1  billion.”

“Kaya po ang magiging suma-total ng mga datos na ito ay lalabas na projected year-end cash position natin ay negative ng mahigit P100 milyon,” he further said.

‘Financially sound’

Coming to the defense of his mother, former Senator JV Ejercito urged Zamora to look at how the money was spent.

“Sir, look at how it was spent, San Juan is financially sound. I don’t think we will b[e] a Seal of Good Local Governance Awardee if there is mismanagement,” he said over Twitter on Monday.

“All the major infrastructure projects are almost completed. What’s important is the city can afford to pay,” he further said.

In a separate tweet, Ejercito, who also served as mayor of San Juan City prior to becoming a senator, said the rehabilitation and expansion of the San Juan Medical Center are “almost completed and majority of loans went there.”

“Would rather have a loan and constituents would benefit from improved medical services than wait another 10 years if we rely on the local funds,” his tweet further read. (Editor: Katherine G. Adraneda)

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TAGS: Debt, Francis Zamora, Guia Gomez, JV Ejercito, latest news, Metro, metro news, news, Philippine news updates, Politics, San Juan
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